Susceptibility to Aβo and TBOA of LTD and Extrasynaptic NMDAR-Dependent Tonic Current in the Aged Rat Hippocampus
Aging, as the major risk factor of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), may increase susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases through many gradual molecular and biochemical changes. Extracellular glutamate homeostasis and extrasynaptic glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDAR) are among early synaptic targets of oligomeric amyloid β (Aβo), one of the AD related synaptotoxic protein species. In this study, we asked for the effects of Aβo on long-term depression (LTD), a form of synaptic plasticity dependent on extrasynaptic NMDAR activation, and on a tonic current (TC) resulting from the activation of extrasynaptic NMDAR by ambient glutamate in hippocampal slices from young (3–6-month-old) and aged (24–28-month-old) Sprague–Dawley rats. Aβo significantly enhanced the magnitude of LTD and the amplitude of TC in aged slices compared to young ones. TBOA, a glutamate transporter inhibitor, also significantly increased LTD magnitude and TC amplitude in slices from aged rats, suggesting either an age-related weakness of the glutamate clearance system and/or a facilitated extrasynaptic NMDAR activation. From our present data, we hypothesize that senescence-related impairment of the extrasynaptic environment may be a vector of vulnerability of the aged hippocampus to neurodegenerative promotors such as Aβo.
KeywordsAging Tonic current Extracellular glutamate Synaptic plasticity NMDA receptors Alzheimer
This work was supported in part by INSERM. The authors are grateful to the animal caretakers of the CPN.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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