Excitatory effects of L-aspartate and L-glutamate on purkinje cells in rat cerebellum

S. L. Morzorati, W. J. McBride, R. C.A. Frederickson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


L-aspartate and L-glutamate were microiontophoretically applied onto Purkinje cells and unidentified cerebellar neurons of urethane-anesthetized rats. Both amino acids produced a dose-dependent increase in the spontaneous firing rate of all cells tested. Fifty-three percent (8 of 15 cells) of the dose-response relationships for L-aspartate as compared to those for L-glutamate on Purkinje cells were not parallel, implying different mechanisms of action (suggesting different receptors). On these 8 Purkinje cells, L-glutamate was three times more potent than L-aspartate. Only thirty-three percent of the dose-response relationships (8 of 24 cells) for the two agents on the unidentified cerebellar cells were not parallel. There was no statistical difference in the potency of L-aspartate as compared to L-glutamate on these particular cells. Tests for antagonism on Purkinje cells revealed L-glutamic acid diethyl ester (GDEE) to be a more effective blocker of L-aspartate than of L-glutamate while DL-α-aminoadipic acid (DLαAA) was not selective in antagonizing the action of either amino acid. These data are discussed in terms of L-aspartate functioning as a neurotransmitter in the cerebellum of rat and possessing receptor sites distinct from those for L-glutamate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)445-447
Number of pages3
JournalBrain Research Bulletin
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1981


  • Purkinje cells L-aspartate L-glutamate GDEE

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Excitatory effects of L-aspartate and L-glutamate on purkinje cells in rat cerebellum'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this