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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Cortical delta-opioid receptors potentiate K+ homeostasis during anoxia and oxygen-glucose deprivation.

Central neurons are extremely vulnerable to hypoxic/ischemic insult, which is a major cause of neurologic morbidity and mortality as a consequence of neuronal dysfunction and death. Our recent work has shown that delta-opioid receptor ( DOR) is neuroprotective against hypoxic and excitotoxic stress, although the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Because hypoxia/ischemia disrupts ionic homeostasis with an increase in extracellular K(+), which plays a role in neuronal death, we asked whether DOR activation preserves K(+) homeostasis during hypoxic/ischemic stress. To test this hypothesis, extracellular recordings with K(+)-sensitive microelectrodes were performed in mouse cortical slices under anoxia or oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). The main findings in this study are that (1) DOR activation with [D-Ala(2), D-Leu(5)]-enkephalinamide attenuated the anoxia- and OGD-induced increase in extracellular K(+) and decrease in DC potential in cortical slices; (2) DOR inhibition with naltrindole, a DOR antagonist, completely abolished the DOR- mediated prevention of increase in extracellular K(+) and decrease in DC potential; (3) inhibition of protein kinase A (PKA) with N-(2-[p-bromocinnamylamino]-ethyl)-5-isoquinolinesulfonamide dihydrochloride had no effect on the DOR protection; and (4) inhibition of protein kinase C (PKC) with chelerythrine chloride reduced the DOR protection, whereas the PKC activator (phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate) mimicked the effect of DOR activation on K(+) homeostasis. These data suggest that activation of DOR protects the cortex against anoxia- or ODG-induced derangement of potassium homeostasis, and this protection occurs via a PKC-dependent and PKA-independent pathway. We conclude that an important aspect of DOR-mediated neuroprotection is its early action against derangement of K(+) homeostasis during anoxia or ischemia.[1]


  1. Cortical delta-opioid receptors potentiate K+ homeostasis during anoxia and oxygen-glucose deprivation. Chao, D., Donnelly, D.F., Feng, Y., Bazzy-Asaad, A., Xia, Y. J. Cereb. Blood Flow Metab. (2007) [Pubmed]
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