Reduced neuroexcitatory effect of domoic acid following mossy fiber denervation of the rat dorsal hippocampus: further evidence that toxicity of domoic acid involves kainate receptor activation
Debonnel, G.; Weiss, M.; de Montigny, C.
Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology 67(8): 904-908
Domoic acid, an excitatory amino acid structurally related to kainic acid, has been shown to be responsible for the severe intoxication presented, in 1987, by more than one hundred and fifty people having eaten mussels grown in Prince Edwards Island (Canada). Unitary extracellular recordings were obtained from pyramidal neurons of the CA3 region of the rat dorsal hippocampus. The excitatory effects of microiontophoretic applications of domoic acid and of the agonists of the two other subtypes of glutamatergic receptors, quisqualate and N-methyl-D-aspartate, were compared on intact and colchicine-lesioned sides. Similar to what has been previously found for kainate, the colchicine lesion of the mossy fiber projections induced a 95% decrease of the neuronal responsiveness to domoic acid, whereas the effect of quisqualate was unchanged and that of N-methyl-D-aspartate was only slightly decreased. These results provide further electrophysiological evidence that domoic acid is a potent agonist of kainate receptors and that it may produce its neuroexcitatory and neurotoxic effects, in the hippocampal CA3 region, through activation of kainate receptors located on the mossy fiber terminals.