Connexin hemichannel blockade improves survival of striatal GABA-ergic neurons after global cerebral ischaemia in term-equivalent fetal sheep

Robert Galinsky, Joanne O. Davidson, Christopher A. Lear, Laura Bennet, Colin R. Green, Alistair J. Gunn

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7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Basal ganglia injury at term remains a major cause of disability, such as cerebral palsy. In this study we tested the hypotheses that blockade of astrocytic connexin hemichannels with a mimetic peptide would improve survival of striatal phenotypic neurons after global cerebral ischaemia in term-equivalent fetal sheep, and that neuronal survival would be associated with electrophysiological recovery. Fetal sheep (0.85 gestation) were randomly assigned to receive a short or long (1 or 25 h) intracerebroventricular infusion of a mimetic peptide or vehicle, starting 90 minutes after 30 minutes of cerebral ischaemia. Sheep were killed 7 days after ischaemia. Cerebral ischaemia was associated with reduced numbers of calbindin-28k, calretinin, parvalbumin and GAD positive striatal neurons (P < 0.05 ischaemia + vehicle, n = 6 vs. sham ischaemia, n = 6) but not ChAT or nNOS positive neurons. Short infusion of peptide (n = 6) did not significantly improve survival of any striatal phenotype. Long infusion of peptide (n = 6) was associated with increased survival of calbindin-28k, calretinin, parvalbumin and GAD positive neurons (P < 0.05 vs. ischaemia + vehicle). Neurophysiological recovery was associated with improved survival of calbindin-28k, calretinin and parvalbumin positive striatal neurons (P < 0.05 for all). In conclusion, connexin hemichannel blockade after cerebral ischaemia in term-equivalent fetal sheep improves survival of striatal GABA-ergic neurons.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6304
Number of pages11
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2017
Externally publishedYes

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