High resolution

Module 10: Figure postsynaptic density

Molecular components of the postsynaptic density in an excitatory glutamatergic synapse.

The postsynaptic density (PSD) is an extensive macromolecular complex consisting of a wide range of signalling components organized on an elaborate framework of scaffolding proteins. The major scaffolding components belong to the PSD-95 family, represented here as PSD-95 and synapse-associated protein 97 (SAP97). They have three tandem PDZ domains (purple circles) that enable them to link the three types of glutamate receptor [α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA), N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR)] to various signalling components and adaptor molecules. The PSD is a very crowded region, and only a selected number of the full complement of molecules have been included, and these have been grouped into seven functional zones (see the text for further details).