Korean J Physiol Pharmacol.  2000 Jun;4(3):177-183.

Comparison of neurotoxicity induced by some glutathione depletors in mouse cortical cell cultures

  • 1Department of Pharmacology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Kwangju, Korea.


We examined the neurotoxic effects of 3 glutathione (GSH) depletors, buthionine sulfoximine (BSO), diethyl maleate (DEM) and phorone, under the presence of trolox, cycloheximide (CHX), pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC) or MK-801 in primary mouse cortical cell cultures. All three depletors induced neuronal death in dose and exposure time dependent manner, and decreased total cellular GSH contents. The patterns of the neuronal death and the GSH decrements were dependent on the individual agents. DEM (200 micrometer) induced rapid and irreversible decrement of the GSH. BSO (1 mM) also decreased the GSH irreversibly but the rate of decrement was more progressive than that of DEM. Phorone (1 mM) reduced the GSH content to 40% by 4 hr exposure, that is comparable to the decrement of BSO, but the GSH recovered and reached over the control value by 36 hr exposure. BSO showed a minimal neurotoxicity (0-10%) at the end of 24 hr exposure, but marked neuronal cell death at the end of 48 hr exposure. The BSO (1 mM)-induced neurotoxicity was markedly inhibited by trolox or CHX and partially attenuated by MK-801. DEM induced dose-dependent cytotoxicity at the end of 24 hr exposure. Over the doses of 400 micrometer, glial toxicity also appeared. DEM (200 micrometer)-induced neurotoxicity was markedly inhibited by trolox or PDTC. Phorone (1 mM) induced moderate neurotoxicity (40%) at the end of 48 hr exposure. Only CHX showed significant inhibitory effect on the phorone-induced neurotoxicity. These results suggest that the GSH depletors induce neuronal injury via different mechanisms and that GSH depletors should be carefully employed in the researches of neuronal oxidative injuries.

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