Chronic AMPK Activation Reduces the Expression and Alters Distribution of Synaptic Proteins in Neuronal SH-SY5Y Cells.
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AbstractNeuronal growth and synaptic function are dependent on precise protein production and turnover at the synapse. AMPK-activated protein kinase (AMPK) represents a metabolic node involved in energy sensing and in regulating synaptic protein homeostasis. However, there is ambiguity surrounding the role of AMPK in regulating neuronal growth and health. This study examined the effect of chronic AMPK activation on markers of synaptic function and growth. Retinoic- acid-differentiated SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells were treated with A-769662 (100 nM) or Compound C (30 nM) for 1, 3, or 5 days before AMPK, mTORC1, and markers for synapse function were examined. Cell morphology, neuronal marker content, and location were quantified after 5 days of treatment. AMPK phosphorylation was maintained throughout all 5 days of treatment with A-769662 and resulted in chronic mTORC1 inhibition. Lower total, soma, and neuritic neuronal marker contents were observed following 5 d of AMPK activation. Neurite protein abundance and distribution was lower following 5 days of A-769662 treatment. Our data suggest that chronic AMPK activation impacts synaptic protein content and reduces neurite protein abundance and distribution. These results highlight a distinct role that metabolism plays on markers of synapse health and function.