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      Role of Glycogenolysis in Memory and Learning: Regulation by Noradrenaline, Serotonin and ATP

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          This paper reviews the role played by glycogen breakdown (glycogenolysis) and glycogen re-synthesis in memory processing in two different chick brain regions, (1) the hippocampus and (2) the avian equivalent of the mammalian cortex, the intermediate medial mesopallium (IMM). Memory processing is regulated by the neuromodulators noradrenaline and serotonin soon after training glycogen breakdown and re-synthesis. In day-old domestic chicks, memory formation is dependent on the breakdown of glycogen (glycogenolysis) at three specific times during the first 60 min after learning (around 2.5, 30, and 55 min). The chicks learn to discriminate in a single trial between beads of two colors and tastes. Inhibition of glycogen breakdown by the inhibitor of glycogen phosphorylase 1,4-dideoxy-1,4-imino- D-arabinitol (DAB) given at specific times prior to the formation of long-term memory prevents memory forming. Noradrenergic stimulation of cultured chicken astrocytes by a selective β 2-adrenergic (AR) agonist reduces glycogen levels and we believe that in vivo this triggers memory consolidation at the second stage of glycogenolysis. Serotonin acting at 5-HT 2B receptors acts on the first stage, but not on the second. We have shown that noradrenaline, acting via post-synaptic α 2-ARs, is also responsible for the synthesis of glycogen and our experiments suggest that there is a readily accessible labile pool of glycogen in astrocytes which is depleted within 10 min if glycogen synthesis is inhibited. Endogenous ATP promotion of memory consolidation at 2.5 and 30 min is also dependent on glycogen breakdown. ATP acts at P 2Y 1 receptors and the action of thrombin suggests that it causes the release of internal calcium ([Ca 2+] i) in astrocytes. Glutamate and GABA, the primary neurotransmitters in the brain, cannot be synthesized in neurons de novo and neurons rely on astrocytic glutamate synthesis, requiring glycogenolysis.

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          Most cited references 40

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          Physiology and pathophysiology of purinergic neurotransmission.

          This review is focused on purinergic neurotransmission, i.e., ATP released from nerves as a transmitter or cotransmitter to act as an extracellular signaling molecule on both pre- and postjunctional membranes at neuroeffector junctions and synapses, as well as acting as a trophic factor during development and regeneration. Emphasis is placed on the physiology and pathophysiology of ATP, but extracellular roles of its breakdown product, adenosine, are also considered because of their intimate interactions. The early history of the involvement of ATP in autonomic and skeletal neuromuscular transmission and in activities in the central nervous system and ganglia is reviewed. Brief background information is given about the identification of receptor subtypes for purines and pyrimidines and about ATP storage, release, and ectoenzymatic breakdown. Evidence that ATP is a cotransmitter in most, if not all, peripheral and central neurons is presented, as well as full accounts of neurotransmission and neuromodulation in autonomic and sensory ganglia and in the brain and spinal cord. There is coverage of neuron-glia interactions and of purinergic neuroeffector transmission to nonmuscular cells. To establish the primitive and widespread nature of purinergic neurotransmission, both the ontogeny and phylogeny of purinergic signaling are considered. Finally, the pathophysiology of purinergic neurotransmission in both peripheral and central nervous systems is reviewed, and speculations are made about future developments.
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            Purinergic signalling in neuron-glia interactions.

            Activity-dependent release of ATP from synapses, axons and glia activates purinergic membrane receptors that modulate intracellular calcium and cyclic AMP. This enables glia to detect neural activity and communicate among other glial cells by releasing ATP through membrane channels and vesicles. Through purinergic signalling, impulse activity regulates glial proliferation, motility, survival, differentiation and myelination, and facilitates interactions between neurons, and vascular and immune system cells. Interactions among purinergic, growth factor and cytokine signalling regulate synaptic strength, development and responses to injury. We review the involvement of ATP and adenosine receptors in neuron-glia signalling, including the release and hydrolysis of ATP, how the receptors signal, the pharmacological tools used to study them, and their functional significance.
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              Astrocyte glycogen and brain energy metabolism.

              The brain contains glycogen but at low concentration compared with liver and muscle. In the adult brain, glycogen is found predominantly in astrocytes. Astrocyte glycogen content is modulated by a number of factors including some neurotransmitters and ambient glucose concentration. Compelling evidence indicates that astrocyte glycogen breaks down during hypoglycemia to lactate that is transferred to adjacent neurons or axons where it is used aerobically as fuel. In the case of CNS white matter, this source of energy can extend axon function for 20 min or longer. Likewise, during periods of intense neural activity when energy demand exceeds glucose supply, astrocyte glycogen is degraded to lactate, a portion of which is transferred to axons for fuel. Astrocyte glycogen, therefore, offers some protection against hypoglycemic neural injury and ensures that neurons and axons can maintain their function during very intense periods of activation. These emerging principles about the roles of astrocyte glycogen contradict the long held belief that this metabolic pool has little or no functional significance.

                Author and article information

                Front Integr Neurosci
                Front Integr Neurosci
                Front. Integr. Neurosci.
                Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                19 January 2016
                : 9
                Drug Discovery Biology, Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University, Parkville VIC, Australia
                Author notes

                Edited by: Ye Chen, Navy Medical Research Center, USA

                Reviewed by: Mauro DiNuzzo, Historical Museum of Physics and Enrico Fermi Center for Study and Research, Italy; Frank Kirchhoff, Saarland University, Germany

                Copyright © 2016 Gibbs.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 12, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 112, Pages: 18, Words: 0


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