Suppression of programmed neuronal death by sustained elevation of cytoplasmic calcium

Trends Neurosci. 1992 Dec;15(12):501-8. doi: 10.1016/0166-2236(92)90103-f.


Chronic depolarization greatly increases the survival of many types of neurons in culture. In at least some cases this enhancement of survival consists of the suppression of programmed cell death, a type of death occurring in developing neurons deprived of sufficient neurotrophic factor support. Available evidence suggests that the effect of depolarization on survival is mediated by a sustained rise of cytoplasmic free Ca2+, apparently caused by influx of Ca2+ through voltage-gated channels. This review discusses what is known about the mechanism by which prolonged depolarization and increased intracellular Ca2+ promote survival.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / physiology*
  • Cell Death*
  • Cytoplasm / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Neurons / cytology*
  • Neurons / physiology


  • Calcium