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N-Methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) play a critical role in different forms of plasticity in the central nervous system. NMDARs are always assembled in tetrameric form, in which two GluN1 subunits and two GluN2 and/or GluN3 subunits combine together. Previous studies focused mainly on the hippocampus. The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is a key cortical region for sensory and emotional functions. NMDAR GluN2A and GluN2B subunits have been previously investigated, however much less is known about the GluN2C/2D subunits. In the present study, we found that the GluN2C/2D subunits are expressed in the pyramidal cells of ACC of adult mice. Application of a selective antagonist of GluN2C/2D, (2R*,3S*)-1-(9-bromophenanthrene-3-carbonyl) piperazine-2,3-dicarboxylic acid (UBP145), significantly reduced NMDAR-mediated currents, while synaptically evoked EPSCs were not affected. UBP145 affected neither the postsynaptic long-term potentiation (post-LTP) nor the presynaptic LTP (pre-LTP). Furthermore, the long-term depression (LTD) was also not affected by UBP145. Finally, both UBP145 decreased the frequency of the miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) while the amplitude remained intact, suggesting that the GluN2C/2D may be involved in presynaptic regulation of spontaneous glutamate release. Our results provide direct evidence that the GluN2C/2D contributes to evoked NMDAR mediated currents and mEPSCs in the ACC, which may have significant physiological implications.

Citation

Qi-Yu Chen, Xu-Hui Li, Jing-Shan Lu, Yinglu Liu, Jung-Hyun Alex Lee, Yu-Xin Chen, Wantong Shi, Kexin Fan, Min Zhuo. NMDA GluN2C/2D receptors contribute to synaptic regulation and plasticity in the anterior cingulate cortex of adult mice. Molecular brain. 2021 Mar 25;14(1):60

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PMID: 33766086

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