Butola T, Alvanos T, Hintze A, Koppensteiner P, Kleindienst D, Shigemoto R, Wichmann C, Moser T
Journal of Neuroscience
Rab-interacting molecule (RIM)-binding protein 2 (BP2) is a multidomain protein of the presynaptic active zone (AZ). By binding to RIM, bassoon (Bsn), and voltage-gated Ca2+ channels (CaV), it is considered to be a central organizer of the topography of CaV and release sites of synaptic vesicles (SVs) at the AZ. Here, we used RIM-BP2 knock-out (KO) mice and their wild-type (WT) littermates of either sex to investigate the role of RIM-BP2 at the endbulb of Held synapse of auditory nerve fibers (ANFs) with bushy cells (BCs) of the cochlear nucleus, a fast relay of the auditory pathway with high release probability. Disruption of RIM-BP2 lowered release probability altering short-term plasticity and reduced evoked EPSCs. Analysis of SV pool dynamics during high-frequency train stimulation indicated a reduction of SVs with high release probability but an overall normal size of the readily releasable SV pool (RRP). The Ca2+-dependent fast component of SV replenishment after RRP depletion was slowed. Ultrastructural analysis by superresolution light and electron microscopy revealed an impaired topography of presynaptic CaV and a reduction of docked and membrane-proximal SVs at the AZ. We conclude that RIM-BP2 organizes the topography of CaV, and promotes SV tethering and docking. This way RIM-BP2 is critical for establishing a high initial release probability as required to reliably signal sound onset information that we found to be degraded in BCs of RIM-BP2-deficient mice in vivo.