In vitro galantamine-memantine co-application: mechanism of beneficial action.
ABSTRACT Several drugs are in clinical use for symptomatic treatment of Alzheimer's disease patients. Since Alzheimer's disease is known to be associated with down-regulation of the cholinergic and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) systems, most of these drugs inhibit acetylcholinesterase, potentiate the activity of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), or modulate NMDA receptors. Galantamine is an anticholinesterase and allosterically potentiates the activity of the nicotinic receptors. We have recently found that galantamine potentiates the activity of NMDA receptors as well. Memantine is unique in that it inhibits the NMDA receptors. We have developed a hypothesis that combining galantamine and memantine will be more effective for improving the patient's conditions than monotherapy with either drug. Patch clamp and intracellular Ca(2+) imaging experiments using rat cortical and hippocampal neurons clearly provided the in vitro bases for our hypothesis. Memantine blocked the extrasynaptic NMDA receptor 100 times more potently than the synaptic NMDA receptor at negative membrane potentials and the block of both types of NMDA receptors was attenuated with depolarization. However, galantamine potentiation of the NMDA receptors was not voltage dependent. Thus, co-application of memantine with galantamine prevented the galantamine potentiation and the activation of extrasynaptic NMDA receptors, but membrane depolarization revealed the galantamine potentiation. Therefore, cell death is expected to be prevented by memantine near the resting potential while the NMDA-mediated synaptic transmission, which is down-regulated in the patients, is maintained and potentiated by galantamine. These results provide in vitro bases for the beneficial actions of galantamine and memantine combinations.
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ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most prevalent form of dementia in the elderly. Alterations capable of causing brain circuitry dysfunctions in AD may take several years to develop. Oligomeric amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ) plays a complex role in the molecular events that lead to progressive loss of function and eventually to neurodegeneration in this devastating disease. Moreover, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors (NMDARs) activation has been recently implicated in AD-related synaptic dysfunction. Thus, in this review we focus on glutamatergic neurotransmission impairment and the changes in NMDAR regulation in AD, following the description on the role and location of NMDARs at pre- and post-synaptic sites under physiological conditions. In addition, considering that there is currently no effective ways to cure AD or stop its progression, we further discuss the relevance of NMDARs antagonists to prevent AD symptomatology. This review posits additional information on the role played by Aβ in AD and the importance of targeting the tripartite glutamatergic synapse in early asymptomatic and possible reversible stages of the disease through preventive and/or disease-modifying therapeutic strategies.Neuropharmacology 08/2013; DOI:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2013.08.013 · 4.82 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been highlighted as a target for cognitive enhancement in schizophrenia. Adult female hooded Lister rats received sub-chronic phencyclidine (PCP) (2 mg/kg) or vehicle i.p. twice daily for 7 days, followed by 7 days' washout. PCP-treated rats then received PNU-120596 (10 mg/kg; s.c.) or saline and were tested in the attentional set-shifting task. Sub-chronic PCP produced a significant cognitive deficit in the extra-dimensional shift (EDS) phase of the task (p < 0.001, compared with vehicle). PNU-120596 significantly improved performance of PCP-treated rats in the EDS phase of the attentional set-shifting task (p < 0.001). In conclusion, these data demonstrate that PNU-120596 improves cognitive dysfunction in our animal model of cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia, most likely via modulation of α7 nACh receptors.Journal of Psychopharmacology 12/2011; 26(9):1265-70. DOI:10.1177/0269881111431747 · 2.81 Impact Factor
Article: Galantamine in Alzheimer's disease.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Galantamine is a cholinesterase inhibitor with a dual mechanism of action. It is a reversible inhibitor of acetylcholine esterase and enhances the intrinsic action of acetylcholine on nicotinic receptors, leading to increased cholinergic neurotransmission in the CNS. Galantamine has a large volume clearance, low plasma protein binding and a high bioavailability. Short-term, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies have shown that treatment with galantamine produces small improvements on cognitive tests and global measures of change in selected patients with mild to moderately severe Alzheimer's disease. A dose of 16-24 mg/day appears to be the most efficacious, and is the licensed maintenance dose range in most territories. The magnitude of the treatment effect is similar to that of other cholinesterase inhibitors. Adverse events experienced by patients treated with galantamine are usually mild, gastrointestinal and may improve with dose reduction.Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics 02/2008; 8(1):9-17. DOI:10.1586/14737220.127.116.11 · 2.83 Impact Factor