NMDA receptor in an excitatory ligand-gated ion channel present in the neurons of the central nervous system. Zinc and calcium ions are an important part of synaptic transmission and disruption of these can be seen in neurological diseases. PSD95 is a major protein involved in the stability of NMDAR at the synapse. This protein can be palmitoylated and de-palmitoylated, a process that is thought to be regulated by Zinc. The exact mechanism of how Zinc is involved in the stability (palmitoylation) of the PSD95 and indirectly, the NMDA receptor, is unclear and will be investigated in our research.
Our hypothesis is that Zinc de-palmitoylates PSD95 leads to the surface reduction of the NMDR. We will be using HEK293 (human embryonic kidney 293 cells) and transfect them to express NMDAR and PSD95. PSD95 palmitoylation by zinc will be assayed using acyl-biotinylation exchange (ABE) and parallelly NMDA receptor expression will be assayed using biotinylation assay and immunochemistry.
Syed, Safiya; Fang, Xiaoqian; Acosta, Luis; Ruvalcaba, Ivonn; Zhang, Yonghong; and Guerra, Lili, "The Role of Zinc in PSD-95 Palmitoyl Modification and NMDAR surface expression." (2021). MEDI 8127 Scholarly Activities Pre-Clerkship. 10.