Low-level laser therapy (810 nm) protects primary cortical neurons against excitotoxicity in vitro

Ying Ying Huang, Kazuya Nagata, Clark E. Tedford, Michael R. Hamblin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Excitotoxicity describes a pathogenic process whereby death of neurons releases large amounts of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate, which then proceeds to activate a set of glutamatergic receptors on neighboring neurons (glutamate, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), and kainate), opening ion channels leading to an influx of calcium ions producing mitochondrial dysfunction and cell death. Excitotoxicity contributes to brain damage after stroke, traumatic brain injury, and neurodegenerative diseases, and is also involved in spinal cord injury. We tested whether low level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) at 810 nm could protect primary murine cultured cortical neurons against excitotoxicity in vitro produced by addition of glutamate, NMDA or kainate. Although the prevention of cell death was modest but significant, LLLT (3 J/cm2 delivered at 25 mW/cm2 over 2 min) gave highly significant benefits in increasing ATP, raising mitochondrial membrane potential, reducing intracellular calcium concentrations, reducing oxidative stress and reducing nitric oxide. The action of LLLT in abrogating excitotoxicity may play a role in explaining its beneficial effects in diverse central nervous system pathologies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)656-664
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biophotonics
Volume7
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cultured cortical neurons
  • Excitotoxicity
  • Kainic acid
  • Low-level laser therapy
  • Mitochondrial membrane potential glutamate NMDA
  • Reactive oxygen species

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy

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