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Epilepsy research

Felbamate but not phenytoin or gabapentin reduces glutamate release by blocking presynaptic NMDA receptors in the entorhinal cortex.


PMID 17980555

Abstract

We have shown that a number of anticonvulsant drugs can reduce glutamate release at synapses in the rat entorhinal cortex (EC) in vitro. We have also shown that presynaptic NMDA receptors (NMDAr) tonically facilitate glutamate release at these synapses. In the present study we determined whether, phenytoin, gabapentin and felbamate may reduce glutamate release by blocking the presynaptic NMDAr. Whole cell patch clamp recordings of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) were used as a monitor of presynaptic glutamate release. Postsynaptic NMDAr were blocked with internal dialysis with an NMDAr channel blocker. The antagonist, 2-AP5, reduced the frequency of sEPSCs by blocking the presynaptic facilitatory NMDAr, but did not occlude a reduction in sEPSC frequency by gabapentin or phenytoin. Felbamate also reduced sEPSC frequency, but this effect was occluded by prior application of 2-AP5. Thus, whilst all three drugs can reduce glutamate release, only the action of felbamate seems to be due to interaction with presynaptic NMDAr.

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F0778
Felbamate
C11H14N2O4