Activation of 5-HT1A Receptors Promotes Retinal Ganglion Cell Function by Inhibiting the cAMP-PKA Pathway to Modulate Presynaptic GABA Release in Chronic Glaucoma

Thou, XJ; Zhang, R; Zhang, SH; Wu, JH; Sun, XH

Wu, JH (reprint author), Fudan Univ, Shanghai Med Coll, Eye & ENT Hosp, State Key Lab Med Neurobiol,Inst Brain Sci,Eye In, Shanghai 200032, Peoples R China.; Wu, JH (reprint author), Fudan Univ, Shanghai Med Coll, Collaborat Innovat Ctr Brain Sci, Shangha

JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE, 2019; 39 (8): 1484


Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) receptor agonists are neuroprotective in CNS injury models. However, the neuroprotective functional implications and synaptic mechanism of 8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino) tetralin (8-OH-DPAT), a serotonin receptor (5-HT1A) agonist, in an adult male Wistar rat model of chronic glaucoma model remain unknown. We found that ocular hypertension decreased 5-HT1A receptor expression in rat retinas because the number of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) was significantly reduced in rats with induced ocular hypertension relative to that in control retinas and 8-OH-DPAT enhanced the RGC viability. The protective effects of 8-OH-DPAT were blocked by intravitreal administration of the selective 5-HT1A antagonist WAY-100635 or the selective GABA(A) receptor antagonist SR95531. Using patch-clamp techniques, spontaneous and miniature GABAergic IPSCs (sIPSCs and mIPSCs, respectively) of RGCs in rat retinal slices were recorded. 8-OH-DPAT significantly increased the frequency and amplitude of GABAergic sIPSCs and mIPSCs in ON-and OFF-type RGCs. Among the signaling cascades mediated by the 5-HT1A receptor, the role of cAMP-protein kinase A (PKA) signaling was investigated. The 8-OH-DPAT-induced changes at the synaptic level were enhanced by PKA inhibition by H-89 and blocked by PKA activation with bucladesine. Furthermore, the density of phosphorylated PKA (p-PKA)/PKA was significantly increased in glaucomatous retinas and 8-OH-DPAT significantly decreased p-PKA/PKA expression, which led to the inhibition of PKA phosphorylation upon relieving neurotransmitter GAB Arelease. These results showed that the activation of 5-HT1A receptors in retinas facilitated presynaptic GABA release functions by suppressing cAMP-PKA signaling and decreasing PKA phosphorylation, which could lead to the de-excitation of RGC circuits and suppress excitotoxic processes in glaucoma.

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