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Changes in ubiquitin immunoreactivity in developing rat brain: A putative role for ubiquitin and ubiquitin conjugates in dendrite outgrowth and differentiation



Changes in ubiquitin immunoreactivity in developing rat brain: A putative role for ubiquitin and ubiquitin conjugates in dendrite outgrowth and differentiation



Neuroscience 81(1): 173-187



The role of ubiquitin in development of the mammalian brain has been studied using a monoclonal antibody, RHUb1, specific for ubiquitin. Immunodevelopment of western blots of homogenate samples of the cerebral cortex, hippocampus and cerebellum prepared from animals of known postnatal age show marked developmental changes in conjugate level. Striking decreases in the level of a prominent conjugate of molecular weight 22,000, which is identified as ubiquitinated histone, are observed during the first postnatal week in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, but not the cerebellum. A marked overall developmental decrease in the level of high-molecular-weight (> 40,000) ubiquitin conjugates which occurs predominantly during the third, but also the fourth, postnatal week is observed in all three regions. Immunocytochemical data obtained with the RHUb1 antibody show intense staining of neuronal perikarya, nuclei and dendrites in early postnatal cerebral cortex and hippocampus. Staining of pyramidal cell perikarya and dendrites is particularly prominent. The intensity of dendritic staining, particularly for the cerebral cortex, shows a striking decrease after postnatal day 14 and only faint dendritic staining is observed in the adult. In early postnatal cerebellum, immunoreactivity is predominantly nuclear, though some staining of the proximal regions of Purkinje cell dendrites is observed between postnatal days 4 and 19. As with the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, most of the ubiquitin reactivity is lost in adult animals. The loss of dendritic staining, particularly in the cerebral cortex, correlates with the decrease in the level of high-molecular-weight ubiquitin conjugates observed on the western blots. Immunodevelopment of western blots of a range of subcellular fractions prepared from developing rat forebrain shows that the developmental decrease in the level of high-molecular-weight ubiquitin conjugates is not uniform for all fractions. The decrease in conjugate level is most marked for the cell-soluble, mitochondrial and detergent-insoluble cytoskeletal fractions. Taken overall, the data suggest a role for ubiquitin in dendrite outgrowth and arborization, loss of dendritic ubiquitin immunoreactivity correlating with completion of these processes.

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Accession: 008287122

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PMID: 9300410

DOI: 10.1016/s0306-4522(97)00196-6


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