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Journal Article

Live cell imaging reveals 3′-UTR dependent mRNA sorting to synapses


Ammer,  Georg
Department: Circuits-Computation-Models / Borst, MPI of Neurobiology, Max Planck Society;

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Bauer, K. E., Segura, I., Gaspar, I., Scheuss, V., IIlig, C., Ammer, G., et al. (2019). Live cell imaging reveals 3′-UTR dependent mRNA sorting to synapses. Nature Communications, 10: 3178. doi:10.1038/s41467-019-11123-x.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-ACC4-C
mRNA transport restricts translation to specific subcellular locations, which is the basis for many cellular functions. However, the precise process of mRNA sorting to synapses in neurons remains elusive. Here we use Rgs4 mRNA to investigate 3'-UTR-dependent transport by MS2 live-cell imaging. The majority of observed RNA granules display 3'-UTR independent bidirectional transport in dendrites. Importantly, the Rgs4 3'-UTR causes an anterograde transport bias, which requires the Staufen2 protein. Moreover, the 3'-UTR mediates dynamic, sustained mRNA recruitment to synapses. Visualization at high temporal resolution enables us to show mRNA patrolling dendrites, allowing transient interaction with multiple synapses, in agreement with the sushi-belt model. Modulation of neuronal activity by either chemical silencing or local glutamate uncaging regulates both the 3'-UTR-dependent transport bias and synaptic recruitment. This dynamic and reversible mRNA recruitment to active synapses would allow translation and synaptic remodeling in a spatially and temporally adaptive manner.