Calcium-permeable AMPA/kainate receptors mediate toxicity and preconditioning by oxygen-glucose deprivation in oligodendrocyte precursors

Wenbin Deng, Paul A. Rosenberg, Joseph J. Volpe, Frances E. Jensen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

165 Scopus citations


Hypoxic-ischemic brain injury in premature infants results in cerebral white matter lesions with prominent oligodendroglial injury and loss, a disorder termed periventricular leukomalacia (PVL). We have previously shown that glutamate receptors mediate hypoxic-ischemic injury to oligodendroglial precursor cells (OPCs) in a model of PVL in the developing rodent brain. We used primary OPC cultures to examine the mechanism of cellular toxicity induced by oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) to simulate brain ischemia. OPCs were more sensitive to OGD-induced toxicity than mature oligodendrocytes, and OPC toxicity was attenuated by nonselective [2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline (NBQX), 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione], α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA)-preferring (GYKI 52466), kainate-preferring (γ-D- glutamylaminomethanesulfonic acid), or Ca2+-permeable AMPA/ kainate receptor antagonists (joro spider toxin, JSTx) administered either during or after OGD. Furthermore, NBQX or JSTx blocked OGD-induced Ca2+ influx. Relevant to recurrent hypoxic-ischemic insults in developing white matter, we examined the effects of sublethal OGD preconditioning. A prior exposure of OPCs to sublethal OGD resulted in enhanced vulnerability to subsequent excitotoxic or OGD-induced injury associated with an increased Ca2+ influx. AMPA/kainate receptor blockade with NBQX or JSTx either during or after sublethal OGD prevented its priming effect. Furthermore, OGD preconditioning resulted in a down-regulation of the AMPA receptor subunit GluR2 on cell surface that increased Ca2+ permeability of the receptors. Overall, these data suggest that aberrantly enhanced activation of Ca2+-permeable AMPA/kainate receptors may be a major mechanism in acute and repeated hypoxic-ischemic injury to OPCs in disorders of developing cerebral white matter, such as PVL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6801-6806
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number11
StatePublished - May 27 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • General


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