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Brain Res Brain Res Rev. 2004 Nov;46(3):282-94.

Targeting mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium channels--a novel approach to neuroprotection.

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Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, and Center for Investigative Neuroscience, Wake Forest University Health Sciences, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27157-1010, USA.


Mitochondrial responses to ischemic stress play an important role in necrosis and apoptosis of brain cells. Recent studies using several different experimental preparations have shown that activation of ATP-sensitive potassium channels in mitochondria (mitoK(ATP) channels) is able to protect neurons and astroglia against injury and death. Thus, targeting of mitoK(ATP) channels appears to be a novel approach to neuroprotection. However, little is known about the mechanisms involved. The purpose of this review is to detail the current state of knowledge about this important, emerging area of investigation, and to provide suggestions for future studies.

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