Anesth Pain Med.  2020 Jul;15(3):291-296. 10.17085/apm.20004.

Effects of tranexamic acid on the activity of glutamate transporter EAAT3

  • 1Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea
  • 2Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, ThanQ Seoul Thyroid-Head & Neck Surgery Center, Seoul, Korea


Tranexamic acid (TXA) is the most widely used hemostatic agent in surgical patients. However, when used in a high dose, it could cause a seizure in the postoperative period. The exact effector mechanism behind the seizure triggering remains unknown. Therefore, the authors investigated the effects of TXA on the activity of glutamate transporter type 3 (excitatory amino acid transporter 3; EAAT3), which is the main neuronal glutamate transporter type.
EAAT3 was expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes through mRNA injection. Oocytes were incubated with diluted tranexamic acid for 72 h. Two-electrode voltage clamping was used to measure membrane currents before, during, and after applying 30 M L-glutamate. Responses were quantified by integrating the current traces and reported in microcoulombs (C). Results were presented as mean  SEM.
TXA (30 to 1,000 M) significantly decreased EAAT3 activity. Our kinetic study showed that Vmax was significantly decreased in the TXA group compared with the control group (1.1  0.1 vs. 1.4  0.1 C, n = 18–23, P = 0.043), but the Km did not significantly change (12.7  3.9 M for TXA vs. 12.8  3.8 for control, n = 18–23, P = 0.986).
Our results suggest that TXA attenuates EAAT3 activity, which may explain its proconvulsant effect.


Electrophysiology; Excitatory amino acid transporter 3; Glutamate plasma membrane transport proteins; Tranexamic acid; Xenopus laevis
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