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J Pharmacol Sci. 2008 Apr;106(4):659-62. Epub 2008 Apr 9.

Oseltamivir enhances hippocampal network synchronization.

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Laboratory of Chemical Pharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.


Oseltamivir, a widely used anti-influenza drug, inhibits virus neuraminidase. A mammalian homologue of this enzyme is expressed in the brain, yet the effect of oseltamivir on central neurons is largely unknown. Patch-clamp recordings ex vivo revealed that oseltamivir enhanced spike synchronization between hippocampal CA3 pyramidal cells. Time-lapse multineuron calcium imaging revealed that oseltamivir and its active metabolite evoked synchronized population bursts that recruited virtually all neurons in the network. This unique, so-far-unknown, event was attenuated by muscarinic receptor antagonist. Thus, oseltamivir is a useful tool for investigating a new aspect of neural circuit operation.

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