The regulated trafficking of AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) from dendritic compartments to the synaptic membrane in response to neuronal activity is a core mechanism for long-term potentiation (LTP). However, the contribution of the microtubule cytoskeleton to this synaptic transport is still unknown. In this work, using electrophysiological, biochemical, and imaging techniques, we have found that one member of the kinesin-3 family of motor proteins, KIF13A, is specifically required for the delivery of AMPARs to the spine surface during LTP induction. Accordingly, KIF13A depletion from hippocampal slices abolishes LTP expression. We also identify the vesicular protein centaurin-α1 as part of a motor transport machinery that is engaged with KIF13A and AMPARs upon LTP induction. Finally, we determine that KIF13A is responsible for the remodeling of Rab11-FIP2 endosomal structures in the dendritic shaft during LTP. Overall, these results identify specific kinesin molecular motors and endosomal transport machinery that catalyzes the dendrite-to-synapse translocation of AMPA receptors during synaptic plasticity.

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