Blakely Lab

The Blakely Lab

New Transporters

Rather than provide for acetylcholine (ACh) inactivation by high-affinity reuptake, neurons hydrolyze the neurotransmitter and recover the product, choline, for reuse in ACh synthesis.

Indeed, studies with choline transporter antagonists indicate that at high rates of neuronal firing, the reuptake of choline is rate limiting for further ACh release. The choline transporter is also very highly regulated and may transit through similar, but distinct, regulatory pathways engaged by monoamine transporters.

We have recently cloned and characterized mouse and human choline transporter genes and have developed gene and antibody probes to document the expression of these molecules in situ. We are actively engaged in using these reagents to understand the molecular basis for choline transporter regulation and whether altered choline transporter expression contributes to autonomic or CNS disorders.