Alpha-lipoic acid protects against methylmercury-induced neurotoxic effects via inhibition of oxidat
MeHg is one of the environmental pollutants that lead to oxidative stress and an indirect excitotoxicity caused by altered glutamate (Glu) concentration. However, little was known of the interaction. Therefore, we developed a rat model of MeHg poisoning to explore its neurotoxic effects, and whether LA could attenuate MeHg-induced neurotoxicity. Seventy-two rats were randomly divided into four groups: control group, MeHg-treated groups (4 and 12μmol/kg), and LA pre-treatment group. Administration of the 12μmol/kg MeHg for 4 weeks significantly increased ROS formation that might be critical to aggravate oxidative damages in cerebral cortex. Meanwhile, Glu metabolism as well as GLAST and GLT-1 appeared to be disrupted by MeHg exposure. Pre-treatment of the 35μmol/kg LA significantly prevented MeHg-induced oxidative stress and Glu dyshomoestasis. In conclusion, findings indicated that MeHg could induce oxidative stress and Glu uptake/metabolism disorders in cerebral cortex, LA might antagonize these neurotoxic effects induced by MeHg.