Increased expression of the astrocytic glutamate transporter GLT-1 in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics

Carlos Matute, Marcello Melone, Ainara Vallejo-Illarramendi, Fiorenzo Conti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

To verify whether altered glial glutamate uptake contributes to the reduced efficacy of glutamatergic transmission reported in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics, we studied the expression of GLT-1, the transporter responsible for most glutamate transport, in autoptic samples of prefrontal cortex using real time quantitative RT-PCR, immunocytochemistry, and functional assays. GLT-1 mRNA levels in medication-free patients were 2.5-fold higher than in controls, whereas they were normal or reduced in patients treated with antipsychotics. We also observed a 4-fold increase in L-[3H]-Glu uptake in Xenopus oocytes injected with mRNA from the prefrontal cortex of a medication-free schizophrenic and a 2-fold increase in GLT-1 protein in the same cortical area of another medication-free patient. Results suggest that GLT-1 mRNA, protein and function are increased in prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)451-455
Number of pages5
JournalGLIA
Volume49
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2005

Keywords

  • Astrocytes
  • Glutamate uptake
  • Schizophrenia
  • Synaptic transmission
  • Transporter regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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