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CREB is a primary hub of activity-driven neuronal gene expression

cAMP Response Element-Binding Protein Is a Primary Hub of Activity-Driven Neuronal Gene Expression

Eva Benito, Luis M. Valo1, Maria Jimenez-Minchan, Wolfgang Huber, and Angel Barco
The Journal of Neuroscience, December 14, 2011 • 31(50): 18237-50

Long-lasting forms of neuronal plasticity require de novo gene expression, but relatively little is known about the events that occur genome-wide in response to activity in a neuronal network. Here, we unveil the gene expression programs initiated in mouse hippocampal neurons in response to different stimuli and explore the contribution of four prominent plasticity-related transcription factors (CREB, SRF, EGR1, and FOS) to these programs. Our study provides a comprehensive view of the intricate genetic networks and interactions elicited by neuronal stimulation identifying hundreds of novel downstream targets, including novel stimulus-associated miRNAs and candidate genes that may be differentially regulated at the exon/promoter-level. Our analyses indicate that these four transcription factors impinge on similar biological processes through largely non-overlapping gene expression programs. Meta-analysis of the datasets generated in our study and comparison with publicly available transcriptomics data revealed the individual and collective contribution of these transcription factors to different activity-driven genetic programs. In addition, both gain- and loss-of-function experiments support a pivotal role for CREB in membrane-to-nucleus signal transduction in neurons. Our data provide a novel resource for researchers wishing to explore the genetic pathways associated with activity-regulated neuronal functions.

Front Cover Journal of Neuroscience

 

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