Prostaglandin E2 stimulates glutamate receptor-dependent astrocyte neuromodulation in cultured hippocampal cells

Rita P. Sanzgiri, Alfonso Araque, Philip G. Haydon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

107 Scopus citations


Recent Ca2+ imaging studies in cell culture and in situ have shown that Ca2+ elevations in astrocytes stimulate glutamate release and increase neuronal Ca2+ levels, and that this astrocyte-neuron signaling can be stimulated by prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). We investigated the electrophysiological consequences of the PGE2-mediated astrocyte-neuron signaling using whole-cell recordings on cultured rat hippocampal cells. Focal application of PGE2 to astrocytes evoked a Ca2+ elevation in the stimulated cell by mobilizing internal Ca2+ stores, which further propagated as a Ca2+ wave to neighboring astrocytes. Whole-cell recordings from neurons revealed that PGE2 evoked a slow inward current in neurons adjacent to astrocytes. This neuronal response required the presence of an astrocyte Ca2+ wave and was mediated through both N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and non-NMDA glutamate receptors. Taken together with previous studies, these data demonstrate that PGE2-evoked Ca2+ elevations in astrocyte cause the release of glutamate which activates neuronal ionotropic receptors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-229
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neurobiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1999


  • Astrocyte-neuron signaling
  • Ca waves
  • NMDA and non- NMDA glutamate receptors
  • Neuromodulation
  • Prostaglandin E

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