Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : SV2C is an isoform of the synaptic vesicle 2 protein family that exhibits a particular pattern of brain expression with enriched expression in several basal ganglia nuclei. In the present study, we have investigated SV2C implication in both normal and pathological basal ganglia functioning with a peculiar attention to dopamine neuron containing regions. In SV2C-/- mice, the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase mRNA in midbrain dopaminergic neurons was largely and significantly increased and enkephalin mRNA expression was significantly decreased in the caudate-putamen and accumbens nucleus. The expression of SV2C was studied in two models of dopaminergic denervation (6-OHDA- and MPTP-induced lesions). In dopamine-depleted animals, SV2C mRNA expression was significant increased in the striatum. In order to further understand the role of SV2C, we performed behavioral experiments on SV2C-/- mice and on knock-down mice receiving an injection of adeno-associated virus expressing SV2C miRNA specifically in the ventral midbrain. These modifications of SV2C expression had little or no impact on behavior in open field and elevated plus maze. However, even if complete loss of SV2C had no impact on conditioned place preference induced by cocaine, the specific knock-down of SV2C expression in the dopaminergic neurons completely abolished the development of a CPP while the reaction to an acute drug injection remains similar in these mice compared to control mice. These results showed that SV2C, a poorly functionally characterized protein is strongly involved in normal operation of the basal ganglia network and could be also involved in system adaptation in basal ganglia pathological conditions.