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Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) has important roles in many processes in the central nervous system. It is enriched at the post-synaptic density (PSD), a localization which is thought to be critical for many of its proposed neuronal functions. In order to better understand the mechanisms that regulate association of CaMKII with the PSD, we compared the levels of autophosphorylation between PSD-associated kinase and kinase in other parts of the neuron. We were surprised to find that alphaCaMKII in a PSD-enriched fraction prepared from recovered hippocampal CA1-minislices had a relatively low level of threonine 286 (T286) phosphorylation and a relatively high level of threonine 305 (T305) phosphorylation. Furthermore, when the minislices were subjected to a treatment that mimics ischemic conditions, there was a significant translocation of alphaCaMKII to the PSD-enriched fraction accompanied with a dramatic reduction in T286 phosphorylation levels throughout the neuron. These findings have important implications for our understanding of the role of autophosphorylation in the localization of CaMKII.

Original publication




Journal article


Brain Res

Publication Date





39 - 49


Analysis of Variance, Animals, Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinase Type 2, Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases, Gene Expression Regulation, Hippocampus, In Vitro Techniques, Ischemia, Male, Neurons, Phosphorylation, Protein Transport, Rats, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Subcellular Fractions, Threonine