Serotonin is a vital neurotransmitter for the functioning of the nervous system in species throughout the animal phyla. Despite its ubiquitous nature, the metabolism of this molecule has yet to be completely elucidated in even the most basic of organisms. Two novel serotonin catabolites, serotonin-O-sulfate and γ-glu-serotonin-O-sulfate, are chemically characterized using capillary electrophoresis with wavelength-resolved fluorescence detection and electrospray mass spectrometry, and the formation of γ-glu-serotonin in Aplysia californica is confirmed. These novel compounds appear to be synthesized enzymatically, and known mammalian enzymes exist for all serotonin transformations observed here. The pathway of serotonin inactivation depends upon the type of neuronal tissue subjected to neurotransmitter incubation, with assorted serotonin products observed in distinct locations. Initially demonstrated to be in the metacerebral cell (MCC) soma, the new serotonin metabolite serotonin-O-sulfate may contribute to important functions in the serotonergic system beyond simple serotonin inactivation.
- Capillary electrophoresis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience