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APMIS. 2012 Sep;120(9):761-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0463.2012.02904.x. Epub 2012 Apr 11.

Effects of lipopolysaccharide infusion on arterial levels and transcerebral exchange kinetics of glutamate and glycine in healthy humans.

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Centre of Inflammation and Metabolism, Department of Infectious Diseases, University Hospital Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.


An imbalance between glutamate and glycine signalling may contribute to sepsis-associated encephalopathy by causing neuronal excitotoxicity. In this study, we therefore investigated the transcerebral exchange kinetics of glutamate and glycine in a human-experimental model of systemic inflammation. Cerebral blood flow (CBF) and arterial to jugular venous concentration differences of glutamate and glycine were determined before and after a 4-h intravenous infusion of Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS, total dose of 0.3 ng/kg) in 12 healthy volunteers. The global cerebral net exchange was calculated by multiplying CBF with the arterial to jugular venous differences. LPS induced a systemic inflammatory response with fever, neutrocytosis, and elevated arterial levels of tumour necrosis factor-α. This was associated with a decrease in the arterial levels of both glutamate and glycine; however, their transcerebral exchange kinetics were unaffected. Inflammation-induced alterations of the circulating levels of glutamate and glycine, do not affect the global transcerebral exchange kinetics of these amino acids in healthy humans.

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