Neurochemical Research

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 501–517 | Cite as

Some factors influencing the neurotoxicity of intrastriatal injections of kainic acid

  • E. G. McGeer
  • P. L. McGeer
Original Articles


Intrastriatal injections of kainic acid are known to destroy striatal neurons including many containing choline acetyltransferase (CAT) and glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD). Using these enzymes as indices of neuronal loss, the neurotoxicity of small doses of kainic acid was found to be influenced by injection time and volume. It was partly blocked by coninjection of some but not all glutamate antagonists or by prior lesioning of the corticostriatal tract. Other adjuvants, drugs, or lesions tested had little modifying effect, except that changes in the dopaminergic system seemed to increase the toxicity towards cholinergic but not GABAnergic systems. High-affinity glutamate accumulation by neostriatal synaptosomes was significantly increased 1–7 days following kainic acid injections. MAO and acetylcholinesterase activities were depressed in kainic acid-lesioned striata but not nearly as much as were CAT and GAD. An indirect mechanism involving glutamate release and inhibition of reuptake is suggested for kainic acid neurotoxicity.


Glutamate Choline Acetylcholinesterase Injection Time Glutamate Release 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. G. McGeer
    • 1
  • P. L. McGeer
    • 1
  1. 1.Kinsmen Laboratory of Neurological Research Department of PsychiatryUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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