Inactivation of Magel2 suppresses oxytocin neurons through synaptic excitation-inhibition imbalance

Ates T., Oncul M., Dilsiz P., Topcu I. C., Civas C. C., ALP M. İ., ...More

Neurobiology of Disease, vol.121, pp.58-64, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 121
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.nbd.2018.09.017
  • Journal Name: Neurobiology of Disease
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.58-64
  • Keywords: Prader Willi Syndrome, Autism, magel2, Oxytocin, AMPA, NMDA, Electrophysiology
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


Prader-Willi and the related Schaaf-Yang Syndromes (PWS/SYS) are rare neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by overlapping phenotypes of high incidence of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and neonatal feeding difficulties. Based on clinical and basic studies, oxytocin pathway defects are suggested to contribute disease pathogenesis but the mechanism has been poorly understood. Specifically, whether the impairment in oxytocin system is limited to neuropeptide levels and how the functional properties of broader oxytocin neuron circuits affected in PWS/SYS have not been addressed. Using cell type specific electrophysiology, we investigated basic synaptic and cell autonomous properties of oxytocin neurons in the absence of MAGEL2; a hypothalamus enriched ubiquitin ligase regulator that is inactivated in both syndromes. We observed significant suppression of overall ex vivo oxytocin neuron activity, which was largely contributed by altered synaptic input profile; with reduced excitatory and increased inhibitory currents. Our results suggest that dysregulation of oxytocin system goes beyond altered neuropeptide expression and synaptic excitation inhibition imbalance impairs overall oxytocin pathway function.