Throughout the past five decades, tremendous advancements have been made in our understanding of G protein signaling and presynaptic inhibition, many of which were published in the under the tenure of Herb Tabor as Editor-in-Chief. Here, we identify these critical advances, including the formulation of the ternary complex model of G protein-coupled receptor signaling and the discovery of Gβγ as a critical signaling component of the heterotrimeric G protein, along with the nature of presynaptic inhibition and its physiological role. We provide an overview for the discovery and physiological relevance of the two known Gβγ-mediated mechanisms for presynaptic inhibition: first, the action of Gβγ on voltage-gated calcium channels to inhibit calcium influx to the presynaptic active zone and, second, the direct binding of Gβγ to the SNARE complex to displace synaptotagmin downstream of calcium entry, which has been demonstrated to be important in neurons and secretory cells. These two mechanisms act in tandem with each other in a synergistic manner to provide more complete spatiotemporal control over neurotransmitter release.
© 2019 Zurawski et al.