Dos Reis, Raphaël, et al. “Complex regulation of Gephyrin splicing is a determinant of inhibitory postsynaptic diversity.” Nature Communications 13.1 (2022): 3507. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-31264-w
Gephyrin (GPHN) regulates the clustering of postsynaptic components at inhibitory synapses and is involved in pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, we uncover an extensive diversity of GPHN transcripts that are tightly controlled by splicing during mouse and human brain development. Proteomic analysis reveals at least a hundred isoforms of GPHN incorporated at inhibitory Glycine and gamma-aminobutyric acid A receptors containing synapses. They exhibit different localization and postsynaptic clustering properties, and altering the expression level of one isoform is sufficient to affect the number, size, and density of inhibitory synapses in cerebellar Purkinje cells. Furthermore, we discovered that splicing defects reported in neuropsychiatric disorders are carried by multiple alternative GPHN transcripts, demonstrating the need for a thorough analysis of the GPHN transcriptome in patients. Overall, we show that alternative splicing of GPHN is an important genetic variation to consider in neurological diseases and a determinant of the diversity of postsynaptic inhibitory synapses.