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Neurosci Lett. 2000 Nov 10;294(1):13-6.

Antisense oligonucleotide suppression of Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger activity in primary neurons from rat brain.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, 5064 Malott Hall, and Center for Neurobiology and Immunology Research, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045, USA.


An antisense (AS) oligodeoxynucleotide based on a conserved sequence in the three isoforms of the Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger (NCX) was used to decrease expression of this Ca(2+) transporter in primary neuronal cultures. Two AS oligo applications decreased NCX activity by approximately 40% within 12-24 h, and neither sense (S) or missense (MS) oligos altered NCX activity. The reduced NCX expression was confirmed by immunoblots and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs). Resting [Ca(2+)](i) levels were 20% higher in AS-treated neurons and showed a slower return to baseline levels following activation of Ca(2+) influx by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA). These results suggest that NCX plays a significant role in maintaining neuronal Ca(2+) homeostasis and in restoring baseline Ca(2+) levels following depolarization.

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