Walls, Anne B3; Waagepetersen, Helle S3; Bak, Lasse Kristoffer3; Schousboe, Arne3; Sonnewald, Ursula2
1 Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology, Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet2 unknown3 Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology, Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet
Function, Regional Differences in Glutamate and GABA Production and Effects of Interference with GABA Metabolism
The operation of a glutamine-glutamate/GABA cycle in the brain consisting of the transfer of glutamine from astrocytes to neurons and neurotransmitter glutamate or GABA from neurons to astrocytes is a well-known concept. In neurons, glutamine is not only used for energy production and protein synthesis, as in other cells, but is also an essential precursor for biosynthesis of amino acid neurotransmitters. An excellent tool for the study of glutamine transfer from astrocytes to neurons is [(14)C]acetate or [(13)C]acetate and the glial specific enzyme inhibitors, i.e. the glutamine synthetase inhibitor methionine sulfoximine and the tricarboxylic acid cycle (aconitase) inhibitors fluoro-acetate and -citrate. Acetate is metabolized exclusively by glial cells, and [(13)C]acetate is thus capable when used in combination with magnetic resonance spectroscopy or mass spectrometry, to provide information about glutamine transfer. The present review will give information about glutamine trafficking and the tools used to map it as exemplified by discussions of published work employing brain cell cultures as well as intact animals. It will be documented that considerably more glutamine is transferred from astrocytes to glutamatergic than to GABAergic neurons. However, glutamine does have an important role in GABAergic neurons despite their capability of re-utilizing their neurotransmitter by re-uptake.
Neurochemical Research, 2015, Vol 40, Issue 2, p. 402-9