Synaptic activity mediates death of hypoxic neurons

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  29 Apr 1983:
Vol. 220, Issue 4596, pp. 536-537
DOI: 10.1126/science.6836300


Cultured hippocampal neurons, when exposed to cyanide or an anoxic atmosphere in the early stages of differentiation, were not visibly affected. However, neurons in the mature cultures died when exposed to cyanide or anoxia. Cell death could be prevented by treatment with magnesium, which eliminates synaptic activity. These observations suggest that damage in hypoxic neurons is mediated by synaptic activity.