Nencki Institute Seminar

Dear All

This Thursday 11th of February 2021, at 3pm, Marta Doliwa – PhD student working at the Laboratory of Neurobiology, under the supervision of dr hab. Katarzyna Kalita and dr Piotr Michaluk, will give a lecture entitled: Role of Lipocalin-2 in the structural plasticity of neurons.


Environment-driven modulation of synaptic transmission is fundamental for learning and memory. The long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic efficacy requires alterations in synapse morphology. These structural modifications are regulated by interactions between pre- and post-synaptic terminals, glia and extracellular matrix. The Lipocalin-2 (Lcn-2) has recently emerged as a novel regulator of neuronal morphology. Outside of the nervous system, Lcn-2 has been shown to influence activity of matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), which extracellular function at the excitatory synapses is crucial for LTP. Excitatory synapses are predominantly located on the small dendritic protrusions called spines. We show that 20 min application of recombinant Lcn-2 on hippocampal cultures provokes elongation of so-called mushroom spines in MMPs’-dependent manner. This phenomenon is believed to reflect synaptic plasticity at the morphological level. To verify if Lcn-2 can be involved in long-lasting synaptic enhancement, we have chemically induced LTP (cLTP) in hippocampal neuron-astrocyte co-cultures. In result, we have observed that Lcn-2 mRNA level increases at 24 h after cLTP induction, as compared to untreated neurons. The immunoflurorescence data suggest astrocytic origin of Lcn-2 after cLTP treatment. We have also demonstrated that in primary astrocyte cultures Lcn-2-pHluorin fusion protein is released in response to ionomycin and ATP treatment, suggestive of astrocytic calcium signaling to be involved in Lcn-2 exocytosis. In aggregate, these data support a role of Lcn-2 in glial-neuronal interactions in synaptic plasticity and, therefore, encourage further to study the role of astrocyte-derived Lcn-2 in synaptic potentiation.

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Best regards,
Aleksandra Pękowska

05 February 2021
2021-02-11 15:00:00
2021-02-11 16:30:00