Ramirez O, S Härtel & Couve A
Biological Reseach 44: 17-23
Neurons are highly polarized, but the trafficking mechanisms that operate in these cells and the topological organization of their secretory organelles are still poorly understood. Particularly incipient is our knowledge of the role of the neuronal endoplasmic reticulum. Here we review the current understanding of the endoplasmic reticulum in neurons, its structure, composition, dendritic distribution and dynamics. We also focus on the trafficking of proteins through the dendritic endoplasmic reticulum, emphasizing the relevance of transport, retention, assembly of multi-subunit protein complexes and export. We additionally discuss the roles of the dendritic endoplasmic reticulum in synaptic plasticity.