Localization and function of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor in the anterolateral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis.

Nagore Puente, Izaskun Elezgarai, Mathieu Lafourcade, Leire Reguero, Giovanni Marsicano, François Georges, Olivier J. Manzoni, Pedro Grandes
PLoS ONE. 2010-01-25; 5(1): e8869
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008869

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1. PLoS One. 2010 Jan 25;5(1):e8869. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008869.

Localization and function of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor in the anterolateral
bed nucleus of the stria terminalis.

Puente N(1), Elezgarai I, Lafourcade M, Reguero L, Marsicano G, Georges F,
Manzoni OJ, Grandes P.

Author information:
(1)Department of Neurosciences, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Basque Country
University, Bilbao, Spain.

BACKGROUND: The bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) is involved in
behaviors related to natural reward, drug addiction and stress. In spite of the
emerging role of the endogenous cannabinoid (eCB) system in these behaviors,
little is known about the anatomy and function of this system in the
anterolateral BNST (alBNST). The aim of this study was to provide a detailed
morphological characterization of the localization of the cannabinoid 1 (CB1)
receptor a necessary step toward a better understanding of the physiological
roles of the eCB system in this region of the brain.
METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have combined anatomical approaches at the
confocal and electron microscopy level to ex-vivo electrophysiological
techniques. Here, we report that CB1 is localized on presynaptic membranes of
about 55% of immunopositive synaptic terminals for the vesicular glutamate
transporter 1 (vGluT1), which contain abundant spherical, clear synaptic vesicles
and make asymmetrical synapses with alBNST neurons. About 64% of vGluT1
immunonegative synaptic terminals show CB1 immunolabeling. Furthermore, 30% and
35% of presynaptic boutons localize CB1 in alBNST of conditional mutant mice
lacking CB1 mainly from GABAergic neurons (GABA-CB1-KO mice) and mainly from
cortical glutamatergic neurons (Glu-CB1-KO mice), respectively. Extracellular
field recordings and whole cell patch clamp in the alBNST rat brain slice
preparation revealed that activation of CB1 strongly inhibits excitatory and
inhibitory synaptic transmission.
CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study supports the anterolateral BNST as a
potential neuronal substrate of the effects of cannabinoids on stress-related

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008869
PMCID: PMC2810340
PMID: 20111610 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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