Dissociated brain cells were isolated from newborn rat pups and loaded with fura-2. Different mechanisms for stimulating increased free intracellular Ca2+ concentrations ([Ca2+]i) were examined in the absence and presence of ethanol. KCl, carbachol, and kainate concentration-dependently increased [Ca2+]i. Quisqualate also elevated [Ca2+]i but did not produce clear concentration-dependent increases. KCl, carbachol, and quisqualate responses reached peak levels within 10-30 s and then desensitized within 90 s. However, kainate-stimulated increases in [Ca2+]i plateaued and did not decline after 90 s. Of these different [Ca2+]i-mediated processes, only 60 mM KCl stimulation was significantly inhibited by 100 mM ethanol, while lower KCl concentrations were not affected. Carbachol-induced release of intracellular Ca2+ and activation of non-NMDA (i.e., kainate, quisqualate) excitatory amino acid receptor-operated cation channels were also not significantly inhibited by 100 mM ethanol. Thus, in acutely dissociated brain cells from newborn rats, only Ca2+ influx via voltage- and, as reported previously, NMDA-operated Ca2+ channels were sensitive to ethanol inhibition.
- Excitatory amino acid receptor-operated channels
- Free intracellular Ca
- Neonatal dissociated brain cells
- Voltage-dependent Ca channels