Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Characterization of the transporterB0AT3 (Slc6a17) in the rodent central nervous system

Maria GA Hägglund1, Sofie V Hellsten1, Sonchita Bagchi1, Anna Ljungdahl1, Victor CO Nilsson1, Sonja Winnergren1, Olga Stephansson1, Juris Rumaks2, Simons Svirskis2, Vija Klusa2, Helgi B Schiöth1 and Robert Fredriksson1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

2 Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia

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BMC Neuroscience 2013, 14:54  doi:10.1186/1471-2202-14-54

Published: 14 May 2013



The vesicular B0AT3 transporter (SLC6A17), one of the members of the SLC6 family, is a transporter for neutral amino acids and is exclusively expressed in brain. Here we provide a comprehensive expression profile of B0AT3 in mouse brain using in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry.


We confirmed previous expression data from rat brain and used a novel custom made antibody to obtain detailed co-labelling with several cell type specific markers. B0AT3 was highly expressed in both inhibitory and excitatory neurons. The B0AT3 expression was highly overlapping with those of vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) and vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1). We also show here that Slc6a17mRNA is up-regulated in animals subjected to short term food deprivation as well as animals treated with the serotonin reuptake inhibitor fluoxetine and the dopamine/noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor bupropion.


This suggests that the B0AT3 transporter have a role in regulation of monoaminergic as well as glutamatergic synapses.