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Neuroreport. 1999 Dec 16;10(18):3887-90.

85 kDa cytosolic phospholipase A2 is a target for chronic lithium in rat brain.

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Section on Brain Physiology and Metabolism, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


The mechanism by which chronic lithium exerts its therapeutic effect in brains of bipolar patients is not known. One possibility, suggested by our demonstration in the rat brain, is that chronic lithium inhibits turnover of arachidonic acid (AA) by reducing the activity of an AA-specific phospholipase A2 (PLA2). To test this further, mRNA levels of two AA-specific PLA2s, cytosolic PLA2 (cPLA2) type IV and intracellular PLA2 (iPLA2) type VIII, and protein level of cPLA2 were quantified in the brain of rats given lithium for 6 weeks. Chronic lithium markedly reduced brain mRNA and protein level of cPLA2, but had no effect on mRNA level of iPLA2. These results suggest that the final common path effect of chronic lithium administration is to reduce turnover of AA in brain by down-regulating cPLA2.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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