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Anti-AMPA receptor autoantibodies reduce excitatory currents in rat hippocampal neurons

Day, C., Silva, J.-P., Munro, R., Baker, T. S., Wolff, C., Bithell, A. and Stephens, G. J. ORCID: (2023) Anti-AMPA receptor autoantibodies reduce excitatory currents in rat hippocampal neurons. Pharmaceuticals, 16 (1). 77. ISSN 1424-8247

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To link to this item DOI: 10.3390/ph16010077


The GluR3 subunit of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) has been identified as a target for autoantibodies (Aabs) in autoimmune encephalopathy and other diseases. Recent studies have proposed mechanisms by which these Aabs act, but their exact role in neuronal excitability is yet to be established. Patient Aabs have been shown to bind to specific regions within the GluR3 subunit. GLUR3B peptides were designed based on described (ELISA) immunogenic epitopes for Aabs and an immunisation strategy was used to generate novel anti-AMPAR Aabs. Target-specific binding and specificity of affinity-purified anti-AMPAR Aabs was confirmed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunocytochemistry and Western blot. Functional anti-AMPAR Aab effects were determined on excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) from primary hippocampal neurons using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. Acute (10 or 30 min) or longer-term (24 h) application of anti-AMPAR Aabs caused a significant reduction in the mean frequency of spontaneous and miniature EPSCs in hippocampal neurons. Our data demonstrate that anti-AMPAR Aabs targeting peptides linked to auto-immune diseases mediate inhibitory effects on neuronal excitability at the synaptic level, such effects may lead to disruption of the excitatory/inhibitory balance at a network level.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (CINN)
Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > School of Pharmacy > Division of Pharmacology
ID Code:109865


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