A minimalist model to measure interactions between proteins and synaptic vesicles


Perego E, Reshetniak S, Lorenz C, Hoffmann C, Milovanovic D, Rizzoli S, Köster S


Scientific Reports


Sci Rep 10, 21086 (2020).


Protein dynamics in the synaptic bouton are still not well understood, despite many quantitative studies of synaptic structure and function. The complexity of the synaptic environment makes investigations of presynaptic protein mobility challenging. Here, we present an in vitro approach to create a minimalist model of the synaptic environment by patterning synaptic vesicles (SVs) on glass coverslips. We employed fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) to measure the mobility of monomeric enhanced green fluorescent protein (mEGFP)-tagged proteins in the presence of the vesicle patterns. We observed that the mobility of all eleven measured proteins is strongly reduced in the presence of the SVs, suggesting that they all bind to the SVs. The mobility observed in these conditions is within the range of corresponding measurements in synapses of living cells. Overall, our simple, but robust, approach should enable numerous future studies of organelle-protein interactions in general.



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