Basal levels of adenosine modulate mGluR5 on rat hippocampal astrocytes

Robert J. Cormier, Steven Mennerick, Heidi Melbostad, Charles F. Zorumski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Neuronal activity elicits increases in intracellular Ca 2+ in astrocytes, which in turn can elevate neuronal Ca2+ and potentiate the efficacy of excitatory synaptic transmission. Therefore, understanding the modulation of astrocyte Ca2+ elevations by neurotransmitters should aid in understanding astrocyte-neuronal interactions. On cultured hippocampal microislands containing only astrocytes, activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) with the specific agonist 1S,3R-ACPD triggers Ca2+ elevations that are potentiated by adenosine A1 receptor activation. A1 receptor modulation of mGluR-induced Ca2+ elevations is blocked by pertussis toxin and is mimicked by the wasp venom peptide mastoparan, suggesting that potentiation occurs by means of a Gi/o mechanism. Surprisingly, on microislands containing only astrocytes, A1 receptor antagonism or adenosine degradation suppresses mGluR-triggered Ca2+ elevations, strongly suggesting that astrocytes are a source of physiologically relevant concentrations of adenosine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-35
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001


  • Adenosine
  • Calcium imaging
  • Fura-2
  • Hippocampus
  • Mastoparan
  • Pertussis toxin
  • Purine


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