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Neurochem Res. 2011 May;36(5):793-800. doi: 10.1007/s11064-011-0404-7. Epub 2011 Jan 21.

Chronic stress and lithium treatments alter hippocampal glutamate uptake and release in the rat and potentiate necrotic cellular death after oxygen and glucose deprivation.

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PPG Neurociências, ICBS, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil.


This study was undertaken to evaluate the effects of chronic variate stress and lithium treatment on glutamatergic activity and neuronal vulnerability of rat hippocampus. Male Wistar rats were simultaneously treated with lithium and submitted to a chronic variate stress protocol during 40 days, and afterwards the hippocampal glutamatergic uptake and release, measured in slices and synaptosomes, were evaluated. We observed an increased synaptosomal [(3)H]glutamate uptake and an increase in [(3)H]glutamate stimulated release in hippocampus of lithium-treated rats. Chronic stress increased basal [(3)H]glutamate release by synaptosomes, and decreased [(3)H]glutamate uptake in hippocampal slices. When evaluating cellular vulnerability, both stress and lithium increased cellular death after oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD). We suggest that the manipulation of glutamatergic activity induced by stress may be in part responsible for the neuroendangerment observed after stress exposure, and that, in spite of the described neuroprotective effects of lithium, it increased the neuronal vulnerability after OGD.

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