Expression and Function of Agat, Gamt and CT1 in the Mammalian Brain

  • Olivier Braissant
  • Claude Bachmann
  • Hugues Henry
Part of the Subcellular Biochemistry book series (SCBI, volume 46)


In mammals, creatine is taken up from the diet and can be synthesized endogenously by a two-step mechanism involving the enzymes arginine:glycine amidinotransferase (AGAT) and guanidinoacetate methyltransferase (GAMT). Creatine (Cr) is taken up by cells through a specific transporter, CT1. While the major part of endogenous synthesis of Cr is thought to occur in kidney, pancreas and liver, the brain widely expresses AGAT, GAMT and CT1, both during development and in adulthood. The adult central nervous system (CNS) has a limited capacity to take up Cr from periphery, and seems to rely more on its endogenous Cr synthesis. In contrast, the embryonic CNS might be more dependent on Cr supply from periphery than on endogenous synthesis. This review will focus on the expression and function of AGAT, GAMT and CT1 in the mammalian CNS, both during development and in adulthood. Emphasis will also be placed on their specific roles in the different cell types of the brain, to analyze which brain cells are responsible for the CNS capacity of (i) endogenous Cr synthesis and (ii) Cr uptake from the periphery, and which brain cells are the main Cr consumers. The potential role of CT1 as guanidinoacetate transporter between “AGAT-only” and “GAMT-only” expressing cells will also be explored


Choroid Plexus Cationic Amino Acid Transporter Creatine Transporter Embryonic Central Nervous System GAMT Deficiency 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olivier Braissant
    • 1
  • Claude Bachmann
    • 1
  • Hugues Henry
    • 1
  1. 1.Clinical Chemistry LaboratoryCentre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois and University of LausanneCH-1011 LausanneSwitzerland

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