GLT-1 upregulation impairs prepulse inhibition of the startle reflex in adult rats

Michele Bellesi, Marcello Melone, Alessandro Gubbini, Silvia Battistacci, Fiorenzo Conti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We tested the hypothesis that glutamate transporter GLT-1 (also known as EAAT2) plays a role in the regulation of prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle reflex, a simple form of information processing which is reduced in schizophrenia. To do this, we studied PPI in rats treated with ceftriaxone (200 mg/kg/day for 8 days), an antibiotic that selectively enhances GLT-1 expression and activity. We showed that ceftriaxone-induced GLT-1 upregulation is associated with impaired PPI of the startle, that this effect is reversed by dihydrokainate, a GLT-1 antagonist, that GLT-1 expression correlates negatively with PPI, and that PPI normalizes when GLT-1a levels return to baseline. Our data indicate that GLT-1 regulates PPI of the startle reflex.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)703-713
Number of pages11
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Ceftriaxone
  • Dihydrokainate
  • Glutamate
  • Glutamate transporters
  • PPI
  • Sensorimotor gating

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Neurology


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