Abstract TP266: Platelet-Derived Glutamate Contributes to Neuronal Injury after Experimental Subarachnoid Hemorrhage
Background: Glutamate toxicity (excitotoxicity) is well-studied in the pathogenesis of brain damage after cerebral ischemia and traumatic brain injury. Patients with subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) also have increased intracerebral glutamate as detected by microdialysis. While neurons and glia are potential sources of glutamate, platelets also release glutamate as part of their recruitment and might mediate neuronal damage. Studies have shown that intraluminal platelets escape into brain parenchyma after SAH. Therefore, we studied the hypothesis that formation of platelet microthrombi after SAH, and their subsequent extravasation releases glutamate that mediates excitotoxic brain injury and neuron dysfunction after SAH.
Methods: We used two models, primary neuronal cultures exposed to activated platelets, and a model of SAH created by injection of 300 μl of fresh, unheparinized arterial blood into the prechiasmatic cistern of Sprague-Dawley rats (300-350 g). Glutamate was measured using amperometric microelectrode arrays. Propidium iodide was used to evaluate neuronal viability in neuronal cultures, and surface glutamate receptor immunohistochemical staining was used to evaluate the phenotype of platelet-exposed cultured neurons and brain after SAH. Microthrombi were stained with anti-fibrinogen antibodies.
Results: We first demonstrated that thrombin-activated platelet-rich plasma releases glutamate in concentrations that exceed 300 μmol/l. When applied to neuronal cultures, this activated plasma was neurotoxic, and neurotoxicity was attenuated by glutamate receptor antagonism. Exposure of cultured neurons to thrombin-activated platelets induced a marked downregulation of the surface glutamate receptor GluR2, a marker of excitotoxicity and a possible mechanism of neuron dysfunction. Microthrombi were detected in rat cerebral cortex 7 days after SAH and linear regression demonstrated a strong correlation between proximity to microthrombi and reduction of surface glutamate GluR2 receptors.
Conclusions: These correlative data support the novel hypothesis that platelet-mediated microthrombosis contributes to neuronal glutamate receptor dysfunction and might therefore influence clinical outcome following SAH.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.