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Neurochem Int. 2007 Jan;50(2):322-7. Epub 2006 Oct 25.

Response of hippocampal mossy fiber zinc to excessive glutamate release.

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Department of Medical Biochemistry, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Shizuoka, 52-1 Yada, Shizuoka 422-8526, Japan.


The response of hippocampal mossy fiber zinc to excessive glutamate release was examined to understand the role of the zinc in excessive excitation in the hippocampus. Extracellular zinc and glutamate concentrations during excessive stimulation with high K(+) were compared between the hippocampal CA3 and CA1 by the in vivo microdialysis. Zinc concentration in the CA3 was more increased than that in the CA1, while glutamate concentration in the CA3 was less increased than that in the CA1. It is likely that more increase in extracellular zinc is linked with less increase in extracellular glutamate in the CA3. To see zinc action in mossy fiber synapses during excessive excitation, furthermore, 1mM glutamate was regionally delivered to the stratum lucidum in the presence of zinc or CaEDTA, a membrane-impermeable zinc chelator, and intracellular calcium signal was measured in the CA3 pyramidal cell layer. The persistent increase in calcium signal during stimulation with glutamate was significantly attenuated in the presence of 100 microM zinc, while significantly enhanced in the presence of 1mM CaEDTA. These results suggest that zinc released from mossy fibers attenuates the increase in intracellular calcium signal in mossy fiber synapses and postsynaptic CA3 neurons after excessive inputs to dentate granular cells.

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