Role of Ectonucleotidases in the Synapse Formation During Brain Development: Physiological and Pathological Implications
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© Bentham Science Publishers
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Extracellular adenine nucleotides and nucleosides, such as ATP and adenosine, are among the most recently identified and least investigated diffusible signaling factors that contribute to the structural and functional remodeling of the brain, both during embryonic and postnatal development. Their levels in the extracellular milieu are tightly controlled by various ectonucleotidases: ectonucleotide pyrophosphatase/phosphodiesterases (E-NPP), alkaline phosphatases (AP), ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolases (E-NTPDases) and ecto-5'-nucleotidase (eN). During central nervous system development and in adulthood all ectonucleotidases have diverse expression pattern, cell specific localization and function. Formation, maturation, and refinement of synaptic contacts are influenced by neurotransmitters and neuromodulators, and control of extracellular adenine nucleotide levels by ectonucleotidases are important for understanding the role of purinergic signaling in developing tiss...ues and potential targets in developmental disorders such as autism.