Effect of hyperthermia and anoxia on glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptor expression in neonatal rat hippocampus

Justyna Rogalska, Peng Kang, Wendy Wotherspoon, Malcolm R. Macleod, Maggie Lai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Brief periods of neonatal asphyxia are frequently observed. Within the CNS, the hippocampus is known to be particularly vulnerable to the damaging effects of hypoxia/ischaemia. The hippocampus contains the highest concentration of both mineralocorticoid (MR) and glucocorticoid (GR) receptors and the balance between MR/GR activation influences cell birth and death. MR occupation appears to promote prosurvival actions, while GR overactivation favours neurodegeneration. It has been widely recognized that core body temperature is a critical determinant of the severity of hypoxic-ischemic brain injury; indeed, hyperthermia exacerbates the degree of damage. Therefore, the aim of the present investigation was to study the effect of elevated body temperature in newborn rats under control conditions or during neonatal exposure to a critical anoxia, on changes of MR and GR mRNA expression in the rat hippocampus. 2-day-old rats were exposed to anoxia in 100% nitrogen atmosphere. Rectal temperature was kept at 33 degrees C (typical for the rat neonates), or elevated to a level typical for febrile (39 degrees C) adults. Control rats were exposed to atmospheric air under the respective thermal conditions. The changes in MR and GR mRNA expression in hippocampus were examined 24 h after exposure. Our data show that hyperthermia with or without added anoxia, causes induction of MR mRNA expression in neonatal rat hippocampus without any effect on GR mRNA expression. We suggest this elevation of MR plays an important role in modulating the survival of neurons in the injured hippocampus. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)196-200
Number of pages5
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jan 2009


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