Acta Neuropathologica

, Volume 75, Issue 1, pp 16–22 | Cite as

Neurotoxicity of monosodium-l-glutamate in pregnant and fetal rats

  • L. Tóth
  • S. Karcsu
  • J. Feledi
  • G. W. Kreutzberg
Regular Papers


Monosodium-l-glutamate given subcutaneously to pregnant rats caused acute necrosis of the acetylcholinesterase-positive neurons in the area postrema. The same effect has been observed in the area postrema of fetal rats. The process of neuronal cell death and the elimination of debris by microglia cells proved to be similar in pregnant animals and in their fetuses. However, embryonal neurons were more sensitive to glutamate as judged by the rapidity of the process and the dose-response relationship. These observations raise the possibility of transplacental poisoning in human fetuses after the consumption of glutamate-rich food by the mother.

Key words

Monosodium-l-glutamate Neuronal death Area postrema Acetylcholinesterase Fetal rats 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Tóth
    • 1
  • S. Karcsu
    • 2
  • J. Feledi
    • 3
  • G. W. Kreutzberg
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of AnatomyUniversity Medical SchoolSzegedHungary
  2. 2.Endocrine Unit, First Department of MedicineUniversity Medical SchoolSzegedHungary
  3. 3.Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive TherapyUniversity Medical SchoolSzegedHungary
  4. 4.Department of NeuromorphologyMax-Planck-Institute for PsychiatryMartinsried bei MünchenFederal Republic of Germany

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