Teaching Resource

A Model for Fast-Track Exocytosis of Synaptic Vesicles

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science's STKE  18 Jan 2005:
Vol. 2005, Issue 267, pp. tr2
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2672005tr2

Additional Files

  • Calcium-Triggered Exocytosis and Clathrin-Mediated Endocytosis of Synaptic Vesicles

    Thierry Galli1*andVolker Haucke2*

    1Membrane Traffic and Neuronal Plasticity Group, INSERM U536, Institut du Fer-à-moulin, 75005 Paris, France.
    2Institut für Chemie-Biochemie, Freie Universität Berlin, D-14195 Berlin, Germany.


    *Corresponding author. E-mail, thierry{at}tgalli.net (T.G.) or vhaucke{at}chemie.fu-berlin.de (V.H.)


    Animation 1. A model for fast-track exocytosis of synaptic vesicles. In this model of vesicle fusion and recycling, the synaptic vesicles stay in close proximity to the plasma membrane. The animation shows vesicle attachment through loose SNARE complexes between synaptobrevin, syntaxin1, and SNAP-25. Calcium entry triggers a conformational change in synaptotagmin 1 that promotes the formation of a tight SNARE complex, which leads to the hemifusion stage of lipid bilayer fusion followed by the opening of a lipid-made fusion pore and release of neurotransmitter. An unknown mechanism prevents the SNARE complex from dissociating further, thus preventing full fusion and concomitant insertion of synaptic vesicle proteins into the presynaptic plasma membrane. SNAPs (not shown) and N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor catalyze the reversion of tight complexes into incompletely disassembled SNARE complexes, and conformational changes in dynamin close the lipid-made fusion pore. Finally, the proton pump restores the electrochemical gradient (not shown) and the vesicles are refilled with neurotransmitter and can undergo another cycle of release.

    Use the buttons to proceed through the animation, to step back, or to restart.

    The animation was created by Cameron Slayden under the direction of Thierry Galli and Volker Haucke.

    The animation would be useful in illustrating a model for partial release of vesicle content through a calcium-triggered process using the synaptic vesicle as a model. Thus, the animation could be useful in neurobiology, cell biology, and biochemistry courses.

    [Access Animation]

    Educational Details

    Learning Resource Type: Animation

    Context: Undergraduate upper division, graduate, professional (degree program)

    Intended Users: Teacher, learner

    Intended Educational Use: Teach, learn

    Discipline: Biochemistry, cell biology, neurobiology

    Keywords: Kiss-and-run, exocytosis, vesicle, synapse, SNARE

    Technical Details

    Format: Shockwave Flash Objects (swf file)

    Size: 71 kb

    Requirements: This animation will play with Macromedia Flash 5 or higher (http://www.macromedia.com/downloads/).

    Related Resources

    Resource Citation Review: T. Galli, V. Haucke, Cycling of synaptic vesicles: How far? How fast! Sci. STKE 2004, re19 (2004). [Gloss] [Abstract] [Full Text]

    Teaching Resource: T. Galli, V. Haucke, Calcium-triggered exocytosis and clathrin-mediated endocytosis of synaptic vesicles. Sci. STKE 2005, tr1 (2005). [Abstract] [Resource Details]

    Limits for Use

    Cost: Free

    Rights: This material may be downloaded, printed, linked to, and/or redistributed without modification for noncommercial, course-teaching purposes only, provided credit to STKE is included by listing the citation for the teaching resource.


    Citation: T. Galli, V. Haucke, A model for fast-track exocytosis of synaptic vesicles. Sci. STKE2005, tr1 (2005).

    © 2004 American Association for the Advancement of Science

Stay Connected to Science Signaling