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Neurosci Lett. 2006 Oct 30;407(3):224-9. Epub 2006 Sep 18.

NMDA receptor mediated dendritic plasticity in cortical cultures after oxygen-glucose deprivation.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA.


Dendrites and spines undergo dynamic changes in physiological and pathological conditions. Dendritic outgrowth has been observed in surviving neurons months after ischemia, which is associated with the functional compensation. It remains unclear how dendrites in surviving neurons are altered shortly after ischemia, which might reveal the mechanisms underlying neuronal survival. Using primary cortical cultures, we monitored the dendritic changes in individual neurons after oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). Two to four hours of OGD induced approximately 30-50% cell death in 24 h. However, the total dendritic length in surviving neurons was significantly increased after OGD with a peak at 6 h after re-oxygenation. The increase of dendritic length after OGD was mainly due to the sprouting rather than the extension of the dendrites. The dendritic outgrowth after 2 h of OGD was greater than that after 4 h of OGD. Application of NMDA receptor blocker MK-801 abolished OGD-induced dendritic outgrowth, whereas application of AMPA receptor antagonist CNQX had no significant effects. These results demonstrate a NMDA receptor-dependent dendritic plasticity shortly after OGD, which provides insights into the early response of surviving neurons after ischemia.

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