Genomic imprinting describes an epigenetic process through which genes can be expressed in a parent-of-origin-specific manner. The monoallelic expression of imprinted genes renders them particularly susceptible to disease causing mutations. A large proportion of imprinted genes are expressed in the brain, but little is known about their functions. Indeed, it has proven difficult to identify cell type-specific imprinted genes due to the heterogeneity of cell types within the brain. Here we used laser capture microdissection of visual cortical neurons and found evidence that sorting nexin 14 (Snx14) is a neuronally imprinted gene in mice. SNX14 protein levels are high in the brain and progressively increase during neuronal development and maturation. Snx14 knockdown reduces intrinsic excitability and severely impairs both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission. These data reveal a role for monoallelic Snx14 expression in maintaining normal neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission.
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