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Neuroprotective effects of stearic acid against toxicity of oxygen/glucose deprivation or glutamate on rat cortical or hippocampal slices



To observe the effects of stearic acid, a long-chain saturated fatty acid consisting of 18 carbon atoms, on brain (cortical or hippocampal) slices insulted by oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD), glutamate or sodium azide (NaN3) in vitro.


The activities of hippocampal slices were monitored by population spikes recorded in the CA1 region. In vitro injury models of brain slice were induced by 10 min of OGD, 1 mmol/L glutamate or 10 mmol/L NaN3. After 30 min of pre-incubation with stearic acid (3–30 μmol/L), brain slices (cortical or hippocampal) were subjected to OGD, glutamate or NaN3, and the tissue activities were evaluated by using the 2,3,5-triphenyltetrazolium chloride method. MK886 [5 mmol/L; a noncompetitive inhibitor of proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR-α)] or BADGE (bisphenol A diglycidyl ether; 100 μmol/L; an antagonist of PPAR-γ) were tested for their effects on the neuroprotection afforded by stearic acid.


Viability of brain slices was not changed significantly after direct incubation with stearic acid. OGD, glutamate and NaN3 injury significantly decreased the viability of brain slices. Stearic acid (3–30 μmol/L) dose-dependently protected brain slices from OGD and glutamate injury but not from NaN3 injury, and its neuroprotective effect was completely abolished by BADGE.


Stearic acid can protect brain slices (cortical or hippocampal) against injury induced by OGD or glutamate. Its neuroprotective effect may be mainly mediated by the activation of PPAR-γ.


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Correspondence to Ming Yin.

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Project supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Shanghai (No 03ZR14056)

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Wang, Zj., Li, Gm., Tang, Wl. et al. Neuroprotective effects of stearic acid against toxicity of oxygen/glucose deprivation or glutamate on rat cortical or hippocampal slices. Acta Pharmacol Sin 27, 145–150 (2006).

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  • fatty acid
  • brain slices
  • ischemia
  • glutamate
  • energy metabolism

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