Vesicular Monoamine Transporters

Supporting information

VMATs (Vesicular Monoamine Transporters) transport biogenic amines such as dopamine into vesicles within monoamine-containing neurons. Vesicular transporters are responsible for filling synaptic vesicles with neurotransmitter, thus contributing to the recycling of neurotransmitter and ensuring neurotransmission throughout the CNS.

There are four known vesicular transporters:

  • VMAT1 and VMAT2 (vesicular monoamine transporters), which transport biogenic amines
  • VAChT (vesicular acetylcholine transporter)
  • VGAT (vesicular GABA and glycine transporter)
  • VGLUT 1, VGLUT2 and VGLUT3 (vesicular glutamate transporters)

VMAT exists as two isoforms - VMAT1 and VMAT2 - which are distributed between different cell types. VMAT1 is generally expressed in neuroendocrine cells while VMAT2 is usually active in serotonergic, dopaminergic, histaminergic and adrenergic neurons. The function of VMAT is not only important for the maintenance of neurotransmission, but also serves a protective purpose: keeping the cytoplasmic concentrations of neurotransmitters low in order to avoid oxidative deamination and toxicity. VMAT2 has been shown to sequester MPP+, the toxic metabolite of MPTP, in synaptic vesicles. VMAT2 is also the only transporter that moves cytoplasmic dopamine into vesicles and this makes it an attractive therapeutic target for both Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease.

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Gene Species Gene Symbol Gene Accession No. Protein Accession No.
SLC18A1
(VMAT1)
Human SLC18A1 NM_001135691 P54219
Mouse Slc18a1 NM_153054 Q8R090
Rat Slc18a1 NM_013152 Q01818
SLC18A2
(VMAT2)
Human SLC18A2 NM_003054 Q05940
Mouse Slc18a2 NM_172523 Q8BRU6
Rat Slc18a2 NM_013031 Q01827

Literature for Vesicular Monoamine Transporters

Neurodegeneration Product Guide

A collection of over 275 products for neurodegeneration research, the guide includes research tools for the study of:

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Huntington's disease
Request copy | Download PDF | View all Product Guides & Listings
Neurodegeneration Product Guide
Dopamine Receptors Scientific Review

Revised in 2013, this review summarizes the history of the dopamine receptor subtypes and provides a guide to the ligands that act upon them. Compounds available from Tocris are listed.

Request copy | Download PDF | View all reviews
Dopamine Receptors Scientific Review
Parkinson's Life Science Poster

Written by Anthony H.V. Schapira, this poster summarizes the neurobiology of Parkinson's disease (PD), including new genetic insight, neurotransmitter pathways, and the role of aberrant α-synuclein metabolism in PD pathogenesis. This poster also presents new and emerging therapeutic strategies to delay the onset and progress of PD. Compounds available from Tocris are listed.

Request copy | Download PDF | View all posters
Parkinson's Life Science Poster

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Neurodegeneration Research Product Guide

Neurodegeneration Product Guide

Our Neurodegeneration guide highlights over 275 products for neurodegeneration research. Request copy or view PDF today.

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Dopamine Review

Written by P. Strange & K.Neve

Dopamine Receptors Scientific Review

Our Dopamine receptors review gives an overview of the dopamine receptor subtypes, and the receptor agonists and antagonists used to study them. Request copy or view PDF today.

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Parkinson's disease: Neurobiology and Therapeutic Strategies

Written by Anthony H.V. Schapira

Parkinson's Life Science Poster

Our Parkinson's disease (PD) poster summarizes the neurobiology of the disease, and highlights current therapeutic treatments for symptomatic PD. Request copy or view PDF today.

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