Effects of Acidic Dipeptides on Aminoacidergic Neurotransmission in the Brain
Among the numerous oligopeptides found in the brain the small acidic peptides have received little attention, although their existence has long been known (5, 6, 36, 38). These substances are often acetylated and contain aspartate, glutamate, serine, glycine, alanine and taurine in various combinations (9, 30, 37, 40). Of the taurine-containing peptides the most plentiful and best known is L-glutamyl-taurine (31), which exists in two forms, alpha and gamma, in approximately equal amounts in calf brain synaptic vesicles (32). Their origin is still obscure, although the biosynthesis of γ-glutamyl-taurine has been shown to be catalyzed by γ-glutamyl-transferase (42). Various effects have been attributed to γ-glutamyl-taurine in different organisms (10). However, the physiological role of all the above mentioned peptides has so far remained entirely unknown in the case of the brain. We have therefore studied the effects of glutamyl-taurine and some synthetic analogs on the actions of putative neurotransmitter amino acids.
KeywordsGlutamate Release Gaba Release Amino Acid Uptake Synaptic Membrane Excitatory Amino Acid Receptor
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