Cultured glial cells express the SNAP-25 analogue SNAP-23

Glia. 1999 Aug;27(2):181-7. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1098-1136(199908)27:2<181::aid-glia8>;2-9.


Astrocytes release glutamate and aspartate in response to elevated intracellular calcium levels, and it has been proposed that this occurs by a vesicular release mechanism, in which SNARE proteins are implicated. Although syntaxin, synaptobrevin, and cellubrevin have been shown to be expressed by cultured astrocytes, SNAP-25 has not been detected. By using immunocytochemical, immunoblotting, and polymerase chain reaction techniques, the present study demonstrates that SNAP-23, an analogue of SNAP-25, is expressed by astrocytes both in culture and in rat cerebellum. These findings provide additional evidence that astrocytes release excitatory amino acids by a vesicular mechanism involving SNARE proteins. SNAP-23 and also syntaxin 1 and cellubrevin were found to be expressed in glial precursor cells, oligodendrocytes, and microglia. These data suggest that the t-SNAREs SNAP-23 and syntaxin 1 and the v-SNARE cellubrevin participate in general membrane insertion mechanisms involved in diverse glial cell functions such as secretion, phagocytosis, and myelinogenesis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Antigens, Surface / biosynthesis*
  • Antigens, Surface / genetics
  • Astrocytes / metabolism
  • Blotting, Western
  • Carrier Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Carrier Proteins / genetics
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Cell Membrane / physiology
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect
  • Membrane Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Microglia / metabolism
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics
  • Neuroglia / metabolism*
  • Oligodendroglia / metabolism
  • Organ Specificity
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Qb-SNARE Proteins
  • Qc-SNARE Proteins
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Synaptosomal-Associated Protein 25
  • Syntaxin 1
  • Vesicle-Associated Membrane Protein 3


  • Antigens, Surface
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Qb-SNARE Proteins
  • Qc-SNARE Proteins
  • SNAP23 protein, human
  • STX1A protein, human
  • Snap25 protein, rat
  • Stx1a protein, rat
  • Synaptosomal-Associated Protein 25
  • Syntaxin 1
  • Vesicle-Associated Membrane Protein 3