Low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1) regulates the stability and function of GluA1 α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA) receptor in neurons

PLoS One. 2014 Dec 12;9(12):e113237. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113237. eCollection 2014.


The low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1) is a multifunctional endocytic receptor abundantly expressed in neurons. Increasing evidence demonstrates that LRP1 regulates synaptic integrity and function at the post synapses, at least partially by regulating glutamate receptors. The α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptors (AMPARs) are critical ionotropic glutamate receptors consisting of homotetramer or heterotetramer of GluA1-4 subunits and play an essential role in synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity. Our previous work has shown that neuronal deletion of the Lrp1 gene in mice leads to decreased level of GluA1 and reduced long-term potentiation. To understand the underlying mechanism, we investigated the cellular and functional consequences of LRP1 deletion in primary neurons. Here, we show that LRP1 interacts with and regulates the cellular distribution and turnover of GluA1. LRP1 knockdown in mouse primary neurons led to accelerated turnover and decreased cell surface distribution of GluA1, which correspond to decreased phosphorylation of GluA1 at S845 and S831 sites. Decreased LRP1 expression also attenuated AMPA-evoked calcium influx and reduced GluA1-regulated neurite outgrowth and filopodia density. Our results reveal a novel mechanism by which LRP1 controls synaptic integrity and function, specifically by regulating GluA1 trafficking, phosphorylation and turnover. They further demonstrate that LRP1-GluA1 pathway may hold promises as a therapeutic target for restoring synaptic functions in neurodegenerative diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Enzyme Stability
  • Gene Knockdown Techniques
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Low Density Lipoprotein Receptor-Related Protein-1
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neurites / metabolism
  • Neurons / cytology
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Pseudopodia / metabolism
  • Receptors, AMPA / chemistry*
  • Receptors, AMPA / metabolism*
  • Receptors, LDL / genetics*
  • Receptors, LDL / metabolism*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / genetics*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / metabolism*


  • Low Density Lipoprotein Receptor-Related Protein-1
  • Lrp1 protein, mouse
  • Receptors, AMPA
  • Receptors, LDL
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Calcium
  • glutamate receptor ionotropic, AMPA 1