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Nat Commun 2022 May 18;131:2746. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-30443-z.
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Novel role of the synaptic scaffold protein Dlgap4 in ventricular surface integrity and neuronal migration during cortical development.

Romero DM , Poirier K , Belvindrah R , Moutkine I , Houllier A , LeMoing AG , Petit F , Boland A , Collins SC , Soiza-Reilly M , Yalcin B , Chelly J , Deleuze JF , Bahi-Buisson N , Francis F .

Subcortical heterotopias are malformations associated with epilepsy and intellectual disability, characterized by the presence of ectopic neurons in the white matter. Mouse and human heterotopia mutations were identified in the microtubule-binding protein Echinoderm microtubule-associated protein-like 1, EML1. Further exploring pathological mechanisms, we identified a patient with an EML1-like phenotype and a novel genetic variation in DLGAP4. The protein belongs to a membrane-associated guanylate kinase family known to function in glutamate synapses. We showed that DLGAP4 is strongly expressed in the mouse ventricular zone (VZ) from early corticogenesis, and interacts with key VZ proteins including EML1. In utero electroporation of Dlgap4 knockdown (KD) and overexpression constructs revealed a ventricular surface phenotype including changes in progenitor cell dynamics, morphology, proliferation and neuronal migration defects. The Dlgap4 KD phenotype was rescued by wild-type but not mutant DLGAP4. Dlgap4 is required for the organization of radial glial cell adherens junction components and actin cytoskeleton dynamics at the apical domain, as well as during neuronal migration. Finally, Dlgap4 heterozygous knockout (KO) mice also show developmental defects in the dorsal telencephalon. We hence identify a synapse-related scaffold protein with pleiotropic functions, influencing the integrity of the developing cerebral cortex.

PubMed ID: 35585091
PMC ID: PMC9117333
Article link: Nat Commun

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