Multifaceted Regulations of the Serotonin Transporter: Impact on Antidepressant Response

Front Neurosci. 2019 Feb 12;13:91. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2019.00091. eCollection 2019.


Serotonin transporter, SERT (SLC64A for solute carrier family 6, member A4), is a twelve transmembrane domain (TMDs) protein that assumes the uptake of serotonin (5-HT) through dissipation of the Na+ gradient established by the electrogenic pump Na/K ATPase. Abnormalities in 5-HT level and signaling have been associated with various disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) such as depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety disorders, and autism spectrum disorder. Since the 50s, SERT has raised a lot of interest as being the target of a class of antidepressants, the Serotonin Selective Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), used in clinics to combat depressive states. Because of the refractoriness of two-third of patients to SSRI treatment, a better understanding of the mechanisms regulating SERT functions is of priority. Here, we review how genetic and epigenetic regulations, post-translational modifications of SERT, and specific interactions between SERT and a set of diverse partners influence SERT expression, trafficking to and away from the plasma membrane and activity, in connection with the neuronal adaptive cell response to SSRI antidepressants.

Keywords: Na/K ATPase; SERT; SSRIs; microRNAs; phosphorylation; trafficking.

Publication types

  • Review