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Brain Res. 2005 Sep 7;1055(1-2):196-201.

A new approach to inhibiting astrocytic IP3-induced intracellular calcium increase in an astrocyte-neuron co-culture system.

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Department of Physiology, Graduate School of Medicine and Dentistry, Okayama University, 2-5-1 Shikata, Okayama 700-8558, Japan.


Astrocytes exhibit dynamic Ca2+ mobilization, such as Ca2+ wave and Ca2+ oscillation, via an inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate-induced Ca2+ release (IICR)-dependent mechanism. The physiological functions of astrocytic Ca2+ mobilization, however, are poorly understood. To investigate this issue, we created a plasmid encoding an enhanced green fluorescent protein-tagged inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate absorbent protein and expressed it in cultured astrocytes. Expression of this protein inhibited both IICR and the Ca2+ wave in cultured astrocytes. By combining this method to the single cell electroporation technique, we were able to inhibit IICR specifically in astrocytes in an astrocyte-neuron co-culture system. Our approach provides a useful tool for direct examination of the physiological role of astrocytic Ca2+ signaling on neuronal function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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