Depression, Activitv AND Sustained Cortex Shifts, and of Cerebral GEORGE Pharmacology, of Cats 277IO of Physiology SOMJEN Duke University, Durham, North Carolina and SEVERAL THEORIES have been proposed to explain the mechanism of spreading depression in the cerebral cortex discovered by Leao (15, 16). Grafstein (6) suggested that this phenomenon is caused by a vicious circle of mounting excitation, initiated whenever and by whatever cause a group of neurons is excited so intensely that the potassium discharged by them into extracellular fluid is sufficient to cause depolarization, and hence further excitation and the release of more potassium by the activated cells and by their neighbors. The positive feedback so created is brought to a halt only by the onset of âcathodal blockâ or, to be more precise, by the inactivation of the excitatorv mechanism of neurons and the consequent cessation of their electrical activity. Van Harreveld (30, 31) and Van Harreveld and Fifkova (32, 33) have proposed a similar scheme, except that they attributed to glutamate the role assigned to potassium by Grafstein (6). Uptake of Na and Cl by cells and their consequent swelling, especially of the apical dendrites of pyramidal cells, is an important ingredient in
Journal of Neurophysiology – The American Physiological Society
Published: Jul 1, 1973
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