GABA and pancreatic β-cells: Colocalization of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) and GABA with synaptic-like microvesicles suggests their role in GABA storage and secretion

Annette Reetz, Michele Solimena, Michela Matteoli, Franco Folli, Kohji Takei, Pietro De Camilli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

304 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

GABA, a major inhibitory neurotransmitter of the brain, is also present at high concentration in pancreatic islets. Current evidence suggests that within islets GABA is secreted from β-cells and regulates the function of mantle cells (α- and δ-cells). In the nervous system GABA is stored in, and secreted from, synaptic vesicles. The mechanism of GABA secretion from β-cells remains to be elucidated. Recently the existence of synaptic-like microvesicles has been demonstrated in some peptidesecreting endocrine cells. The function of these vesicles is so far unknown. The proposed paracrine action of GABA in pancreatic islets makes β-cells a useful model system to explore the possibility that synaptic-like microvesicles, like synaptic vesicles, are involved in the storage and release of non-peptide neurotransmitters. We report here the presence of synaptic-like microvesicles in β-cells and in β-cell lines. Some β-cells in culture were found to extend neurite-like processes. When these were present, synaptic-like microvesicles were particularly concentrated in their distal portions. The GABA synthesizing enzyme, glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), was found to be localized around synaptic-like microvesicles. This was similar to the localization of GAD around synaptic vesicles in GABA-secreting neurons. GABA immunoreactivity was found to be concentrated in regions of β-cells which were enriched in synaptic-like microvesicles. These findings suggest that in β-cells synaptic-like microvesicles are storage organelles for GABA and support the hypothesis that storage of non-peptide signal molecules destined for secretion might be a general feature of synaptic-like microvesicles of endocrine cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1275-1284
Number of pages10
JournalEMBO Journal
Volume10
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Glutamate Decarboxylase
gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
Synaptic Vesicles
Islets of Langerhans
Endocrine Cells
Cells
Neurotransmitter Agents
GABAergic Neurons
Neurites
Neurology
Organelles
Nervous System
Cell culture
Neurons
Cell Culture Techniques
Brain
Cell Line
Molecules
Enzymes

Keywords

  • β-cell
  • Diabetes
  • GABA
  • Glutamic acid decarboxylase
  • Synaptic vesicle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Genetics

Cite this

GABA and pancreatic β-cells : Colocalization of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) and GABA with synaptic-like microvesicles suggests their role in GABA storage and secretion. / Reetz, Annette; Solimena, Michele; Matteoli, Michela; Folli, Franco; Takei, Kohji; De Camilli, Pietro.

In: EMBO Journal, Vol. 10, No. 5, 1991, p. 1275-1284.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Reetz, Annette ; Solimena, Michele ; Matteoli, Michela ; Folli, Franco ; Takei, Kohji ; De Camilli, Pietro. / GABA and pancreatic β-cells : Colocalization of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) and GABA with synaptic-like microvesicles suggests their role in GABA storage and secretion. In: EMBO Journal. 1991 ; Vol. 10, No. 5. pp. 1275-1284.
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