2Belozersky Institute of Physico-Chemical Biology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119991 Moscow, Russia; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received March 4, 2016; Revision received May 17, 2016
Rat cultured cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs) were not sensitive to CuCl2 (1-10 µM, 24 h), whereas paraquat (150 µM) decreased neuronal survival to 79 ± 3% of control level. Simultaneous treatment of CGNs with paraquat and CuCl2 (2, 5, or 10 µM Cu2+/paraquat) caused significant copper dose-dependent death, lowering their survival to 56 ± 4, 37 ± 3, or 16 ± 2%, respectively, and stimulating elevated production of free radicals in CGNs. Introduction of vitamin E, a non-competitive antagonist of NMDA subtype of glutamate receptors (MK-801), and also removal of glutamine from the incubation medium decreased toxicity of Cu2+/paraquat mixture. However, addition of Cu2+ into the incubation medium did not affect CGNs death caused by glutamate. These data emphasize that excessive copper in the brain may trigger oxidative stress, which in turn results in release of glutamate, overstimulation of glutamate receptors, and neuronal death.
KEY WORDS: copper, paraquat, cerebellar granule neurons, free radicals, glutamate