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Neurobiol Dis. 2004 Dec;17(3):415-26.

Resistance of neurofilaments to degradation, and lack of neuronal death and mossy fiber sprouting after kainic acid-induced status epilepticus in the developing rat hippocampus.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Pharmacology, FIN-20520 Turku, Finland.


Neurofilament (NF) proteins, the major constituent of intermediate filaments in neurons, have an important role in cellular stability and plasticity. We have now studied the short-term (hours) and long-term (up to 1 week) effects of kainic acid (KA)-induced status epilepticus (SE) on the reactivity of NF proteins, and mossy fiber (MF) sprouting and neuronal death up to 4 weeks in 9-day-old rats. In Western blotting, the expression of the phosphorylation-independent epitopes of NF-L, NF-M, and NF-H rapidly but transiently increased after the treatment, whereas the phosphorylated NF-M remained elevated for 7 days. However, the treatment did not change the immunoreactivity of NF proteins, and no neuronal death or mossy fiber sprouting was detected at any time point. Our findings indicate seizure-induced reactivity of NF proteins but their resistance to degradation, which could be of importance in neuronal survival and may also prevent MF sprouting in the developing hippocampus.

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