Kynurenic acid blocks neurotoxicity and seizures induced in rats by the related brain metabolite quinolinic acid

Neurosci Lett. 1984 Aug 10;48(3):273-8. doi: 10.1016/0304-3940(84)90050-8.


Kynurenic acid (KYNA) was tested as an antagonist of the neurotoxic and epileptogenic effects of the metabolically related brain constituent quinolinic acid (QUIN). In the rat striatum, KYNA blocked the neurotoxic effects of QUIN in preference to those of other excitotoxins. In the hippocampus, KYNA antagonized both the neurodegeneration and seizures caused by the local application of QUIN. These properties of KYNA raise the possibility of a functional link between KYNA and QUIN in the brain which may be of relevance for an understanding of human neurodegenerative disorders.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Choline O-Acetyltransferase / metabolism
  • Corpus Striatum / drug effects
  • Corpus Striatum / pathology
  • Corpus Striatum / physiology*
  • Hippocampus / drug effects
  • Hippocampus / pathology
  • Hippocampus / physiology*
  • Kynurenic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Nerve Degeneration
  • Neurotoxins*
  • Pyridines / toxicity*
  • Quinolinic Acid
  • Quinolinic Acids / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Quinolinic Acids / toxicity*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Seizures / drug therapy
  • Seizures / physiopathology*


  • Neurotoxins
  • Pyridines
  • Quinolinic Acids
  • Choline O-Acetyltransferase
  • Quinolinic Acid
  • Kynurenic Acid