Differential cellular expression of isoforms of inositol 1,4,5- triphosphate receptors in neurons and glia in brain

Alan H. Sharp, Frederick C. Nucifora, Olivier Blondel, Carol A. Sheppard, Chuanyi Zhang, Solomon H. Snyder, James T. Russell, David K. Ryugo, Christopher A. Ross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

155 Scopus citations


Inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors (IP3R) are mediators of second messenger-induced intracellular calcium release. Three isoforms are known to be expressed in brain, but their regional distributions and cellular localizations are little known. In order to better understand the roles of IP3 receptor isoforms in brain function, a first step is to define their distributions. We have used affinity-purified antibodies directed against peptides unique to each isoform to determine their sites of expression in rat brain. Type 1 IP3R (IP3R1) is dramatically enriched in Purkinje neurons in cerebellum and neurons in other regions, consistent with previous studies. By contrast, IP3R2 is only detected in glia, whereas IP3R3 is predominantly neuronal, with little detected in glia. IP3R3 is enriched in neuropil, especially in neuronal terminals (which often contain large dense core vesicles) in limbic and basal forebrain regions including olfactory tubercle, central nucleus of the amygdala, and bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. In addition, IP3R1 and IP3R3 have clearly distinct time courses of expression in developing brains. These data suggest separate roles for inositol 1,4,5- trisphosphate receptor isoforms in development, and for glial and neuronal function. The IP3R3 may be involved in regulation of neurotransmitter or neuropeptide release in terminals within specific nuclei of the basal forebrain and limbic system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-220
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Comparative Neurology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 5 1999


  • Ca release
  • Electron microscopy
  • Limbic system
  • Neuropeptides
  • Second messengers
  • Synapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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