PubMed 22982626

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Kir2.3

Title: Effects of sex and chronic neonatal nicotine treatment on Na²⁺/K⁺/Cl⁻ co-transporter 1, K⁺/Cl⁻ co-transporter 2, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, NMDA receptor subunit 2A and NMDA receptor subunit 2B mRNA expression in the postnatal rat hippocampus.

Authors: J C Damborsky, U H Winzer-Serhan

Journal, date & volume: Neuroscience, 2012 Dec 6 , 225, 105-17

PubMed link:

Chronic exposure to nicotine during the first postnatal week in rats, a developmental period that corresponds to the third trimester of human gestation, results in sexually dimorphic long-term functional defects in the adult hippocampus. One potential cause could be the sex-specific differences in the maturation of GABA(A) receptor-mediated responses from excitatory to inhibitory, which depends on the expression of the Na(2+)/K(+)/Cl(-) co-transporter 1 (NKCC1) and the K(+)/Cl(-) co-transporter 2 (KCC2). In the rat hippocampus, this switch occurs during the first and second postnatal week in females and males, respectively, and is regulated by nicotinic receptor activation. Excitatory GABAergic signaling can increase brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression, which might exacerbate sex differences by impacting synaptogenesis. We hypothesized that chronic neonatal nicotine (CNN) exposure differentially regulates the expression of these co-transporters and BDNF in males and females. We use quantitative isotopic in situ hybridization to examine the expression of mRNAs for NKCC1, KCC2, BDNF, and NMDA receptor subunit 2A (NR2A) and NMDA receptor subunit 2B (NR2B) in the postnatal day (P) 5 and 8 rat hippocampi in both sexes that were either control-treated or with 6mg/kg/day nicotine in milk formula (CNN) via gastric intubation starting at P1. In line with prolonged GABAergic excitation, we found that at P5 males had significantly higher mRNA expression of NKCC1 and BDNF than females. CNN treatment resulted in a significant increase in KCC2 and BDNF mRNA expression in male but not female hippocampus (p<0.05). Males also had higher expression of NR2A and lower expression of NR2B at P5 compared to females (p<0.05). At P8, there were neither sex nor treatment effects on mRNA expression, indicating the end of a critical period for sensitivity to nicotine. These results suggest that differential maturation of GABA(A)R-mediated responses result in sex-specific sensitivity to nicotine during early postnatal development, potentially explaining the differential long-term effects of CNN on hippocampal function.