L-Serine is synthesized from glycolytic intermediate 3-phosphoglycerate and is an indispensable precursor for the synthesis of proteins, membrane lipids, nucleotides, and neuroactive amino acids D-serine and glycine. We have recently shown that L-serine and its interconvertible glycine act as Bergmann glia-derived trophic factors for cerebellar Purkinje cells. To investigate whether such a metabolic neuron-glial relationship is fundamental to the developing and adult brain, we examined by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry the cellular expression of 3-phosphoglycerate dehydrogenase (3PGDH), the initial step enzyme for de novo L-serine biosynthesis in animal cells. At early stages when the neural wall consists exclusively of the ventricular zone, neuroepithelial stem cells expressed 3PGDH strongly and homogeneously. Thereafter, 3PGDH expression was downregulated and eventually disappeared in neuronal populations, whereas its high expression was transmitted to the radial glia and later to astrocytes in the gray and white matters. In addition, 3PGDH was highly expressed throughout development in the olfactory ensheathing glia, a specialized supporting cell that thoroughly ensheathes olfactory nerves. These results establish a fundamental link of the radial glia/astrocyte lineage and olfactory ensheathing glia to L-serine biosynthesis in the brain. We discuss this finding in the context of the hypothesis that 3PGDH expression in these glia cells contributes to energy metabolism in differentiating and differentiated neurons and other glia cells, which are known to be vulnerable to energy loss.
|Number of pages
|Journal of Neuroscience
|Published - Oct 1 2001
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Neuroscience