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Vav3 Is Involved in GABAergic Axon Guidance Events Important for the Proper Function of Brainstem Neurons Controlling Cardiovascular, Respiratory, and Renal Parameters

AuthorsSauzeau, Vincent; Bustelo, Xosé R.
Issue Date23-Sep-2010
PublisherAmerican Society for Cell Biology
CitationMolecular Biology of the Cell 21(23):4251–4263 (2010)
AbstractVav3 is a phosphorylation-dependent activator of Rho/Rac GTPases that has been implicated in hematopoietic, bone, cerebellar, and cardiovascular roles. Consistent with the latter function, Vav3-deficient mice develop hypertension, tachycardia, and renocardiovascular dysfunctions. The cause of those defects remains unknown as yet. Here, we show that Vav3 is expressed in GABAegic neurons of the ventrolateral medulla (VLM), a brainstem area that modulates respiratory rates and, via sympathetic efferents, a large number of physiological circuits controlling blood pressure. On Vav3 loss, GABAergic cells of the caudal VLM cannot innervate properly their postsynaptic targets in the rostral VLM, leading to reduced GABAergic transmission between these two areas. This results in an abnormal regulation of catecholamine blood levels and in improper control of blood pressure and respiration rates to GABAergic signals. By contrast, the reaction of the rostral VLM to excitatory signals is not impaired. Consistent with those observations, we also demonstrate that Vav3 plays important roles in axon branching and growth cone morphology in primary GABAergic cells. Our study discloses an essential and nonredundant role for this Vav family member in axon guidance events in brainstem neurons that control blood pressure and respiratory rates.
Description13 páginas, 9 figuras.-- et al.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1091/mbc.E10-07-0639
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