Asynchronously enhanced spiking activity of ischemic neuronal networks

Biol Pharm Bull. 2011;34(5):764-7. doi: 10.1248/bpb.34.764.


Cerebral ischemia causes the depletion of oxygen and nutrition from brain tissues, and when persistent, results in irreversible damage to the cell function and survival. The cellular response to ischemic conditions and its mechanisms have been investigated widely in in vivo and in vitro experimental models, yet no study has addressed the response of a whole neuronal network to energy deprivation with the single-cell resolution. Observations at the level of network are necessary, because the activity of individual neurons is nonlinearly integrated through a network and thereby gives rise to unexpectedly complex dynamics. Here we used functional multineuron calcium imaging (fMCI), an optical recording technique with high temporal and spatial resolution, to visualize the activity of neuron populations in hippocampus CA1 region under ischemia-like conditions ex vivo. We found that, although neurons responded to oxygen and glucose deprivation with an increase in the event frequency, they maintained an asynchronous network state. This is in contrast with other well known pathological states, in which the network hyperexcitability is usually accompanied by an increase in synchrony. We suggest that under ischemic conditions, at least to some time point, the neuronal network maintains the excitatory and inhibitory balance as a whole, whether actively or as a consequence of the cellular response to energy deprivation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials*
  • Animals
  • Ischemia / physiopathology*
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar