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Long considered merely a trophic and mechanical support to neurons, astrocytes have progressively taken the center stage as their ability to react to acute and chronic neurodegenerative situations became increasingly clear. Reactive astrogliosis starts when trigger molecules produced at the injury site drive astrocytes to leave their quiescent state and(More)
Recently, cannabinoids (CBs) have been shown to possess antitumor properties. Because the psychoactivity of cannabinoid compounds limits their medicinal usage, we undertook the present study to evaluate the in vitro antiproliferative ability of cannabidiol (CBD), a nonpsychoactive cannabinoid compound, on U87 and U373 human glioma cell lines. The addition(More)
We have used primary cultures of rat striatum to study the effects of ATP analogues on the elongation of astrocytic processes, a parameter of astroglial cell differentiation. Parallel studies were performed with basic fibroblast growth factor, a known regulator of astroglial cell function. After three days in culture, both the growth factor and alpha(More)
Upon central nervous system injury, the extracellular concentrations of nucleotides and cysteinyl-leukotrienes, two unrelated families of endogenous signalling molecules, are markedly increased at the site of damage, suggesting that they may act as 'danger signals' to alert responses to tissue damage and start repair. Here we show that, in non-injured(More)
Adenosine receptors modulate neuronal and synaptic function in a range of ways that may make them relevant to the occurrence, development and treatment of brain ischemic damage and degenerative disorders. A(1) adenosine receptors tend to suppress neural activity by a predominantly presynaptic action, while A(2A) adenosine receptors are more likely to(More)
The aim of this review is to summarize and critically discuss the complex role played by adenosine A(2A) receptors (A(2A)Rs) in Huntington's disease (HD). Since A(2A)Rs are mainly localized on the neurons, which degenerate early in HD, and given their ability to stimulate glutamate outflow and inflammatory gliosis, it was hypothesized that they could be(More)
The blood-brain barrier (BBB), the dynamic interface between the nervous tissue and the blood, is composed by endothelial cells, pericytes and astrocytes. Extracellular nucleotides and nucleosides and their receptors (the purinergic system) constitute a widely diffused signaling system involved in many pathophysiological processes. However, the role of this(More)
The recently cloned G protein-coupled adenosine A3 receptor has been proposed to play a role in the pathophysiology of cerebral ischemia. Because phospholipase C activation occurs as a very early response to brain ischemia, we evaluated the ability of A3- selective and nonselective adenosine analogues to elicit phosphoinositide hydrolysis. In(More)
Central nervous system glial cells release and respond to nucleotides under both physiological and pathological conditions, suggesting that these molecules play key roles in both normal brain function and in repair after damage. In particular, ATP released from astrocytes activates P2 receptors on astrocytes and other brain cells, allowing a form of(More)
Inflammation is the most fundamental body reaction to noxious stimuli. No vascularized tissue, organ or apparatus is free from this response. Several mediators of inflammation, originating from outside (exogenous) or inside (endogenous) the body, are known. Among the endogenous factors, extracellular nucleotides and nucleosides are attracting interest for(More)