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Botulinum neurotoxin type A blocks the morphological changes induced by chemical stimulation on the presynaptic membrane of Torpedo synaptosomes.
Marsal Tebé, Jordi; Egea Guri, Gustavo; Solsona Sancho, Carles; Rabasseda, X.; Blasi Cabús, Joan
Universitat de Barcelona
The action of botulinum neurotoxin on acetylcholine release, and on the structural changes at the presynaptic membrane associated with the transmitter release,was studied by using a subcellular fraction of cholinergic nerve terminals (synaptosomes) isolated from the Torpedo electric organ. Acetylcholine and ATP release were continuously monitored by chemiluminescent methods.To catch the membrane morphological changes, the quick-freezing method was applied. Our results show that botulinum neurotoxin inhibits the release of acetylcholine from these isolated nerve terminals in a dose-dependent manner, whereas ATP release is not affected. The maximal inhibition (70%) is achieved at neurotoxin concentrations as low as 125 pM with an incubation time of 6 min. This effect is not linked to an alteration of the integrity of the synaptosomes since, after poisoning by botulinum neurotoxin type A, they show a nonmodified occluded lactate dehydrogenase activity. Moreover, membrane potential is not altered by the toxin with respect to the control, either in resting condition or after potassium depolarization. In addition to acetylcholine release inhibition, botulinum neurotoxin blocks the rearrangement of the presynaptic intramembrane particles induced by potassium stimulation. The action of botulinum neurotoxin suggests that the intramembrane particle rearrangement is related to the acetylcholine secretion induced by potassium stimulation in synaptosomes isolated from the electric organ of Torpedo marmorata.
Toxina botulínica
Botulinum toxin
Neural transmission
(c) Marsal Tebé, Jordi et al., 1989
National Academy of Sciences

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