Neurochemical Research

, Volume 14, Issue 11, pp 1143–1147 | Cite as

Penicillin-induced convulsions have preferential effects on transmitter glutamate pools in rat neostriatum

  • Kjetil Furset
  • Bernt A. Engelsen
Original Articles


Convulsant doses of penicillin and elevated ambient pressure of 41 bar enhance the excitability of neurons. Their effects have been studied in neostriatal tissue with methods allowing differentiation between transmitter and metabolic glutamate pools. Levels of glutamate (Glu), glutamine (Gln), aspartate (Asp); γ-aminobutyric acid and taurine were measured in the intact and decorticated neostriatum and parieto-occipital cortex of rats with a unilateral frontal cortex ablation. Intravenous infusion of penicillin at 1 bar decreased the neostriatal Glu content in the intact but not in the decorticated hemisphere. Pressure of 41 bar significantly decreased the level of Asp in the decorticated side only. Infusion of penicillin at 41 bar reduced the levels of Glu by 20.1% and Gln by 21.0% in the intact neostriatum only, whereas it decreased the Asp level in both sides as compared to control. The cortical Glu content was decreased only after infusion of penicillin at 41 bar. The results suggest that intravenous penicillin has a more pronounced effect on transmitter than on metabolic Glu pools in rat brain.

Key Words

Glutamate neostriatum neurotransmitter penicillin high pressure high pressure neurological syndrome 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kjetil Furset
    • 1
  • Bernt A. Engelsen
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhysiologyUniversity of BergenNorway
  2. 2.The Gade Institute, Department of PathologyUniversity of BergenBergenNorway

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