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J Vet Sci 2018; 19(2): 172-178  https://doi.org/10.4142/jvs.2018.19.2.172
Korean red ginseng excitation of paraventricular nucleus neurons via non-N-methyl-D-aspartate glutamate receptor activation in mice
Yiming Shen1,2, Janardhan P. Bhattarai1, Soo Joung Park1, Gyu Seung Lee3, Pan Dong Ryu2,*, Seong Kyu Han1,*
1Department of Oral Physiology, School of Dentistry and Institute of Oral Bioscience, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Korea
2Department of Pharmacology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
3Daejeon Dong-gu Health Promotion Center, Daejeon 34691, Korea
Correspondence to: Tel: +82-63-270-4030; Fax: +82-63-270-4030; E-mails: skhan@jbnu.ac.kr (SK Han), pdryu@snu.ac.kr (PD Ryu)
Received: June 23, 2017; Revised: August 23, 2017; Accepted: October 26, 2017; Published online: March 31, 2018.
It has been reported that Korean red ginseng (KRG), a valuable and important traditional medicine, has varied effects on the central nervous system, suggesting its activities are complicated. The paraventricular nucleus (PVN) neurons of the hypothalamus has a critical role in stress responses and hormone secretions. Although the action mechanisms of KRG on various cells and systems have been reported, the direct membrane effects of KRG on PVN neurons have not been fully described. In this study, the direct membrane effects of KRG on PVN neuronal activity were investigated by using a perforated patch-clamp in ICR mice. In gramicidin perforated patch-clamp mode, KRG extract (KRGE) induced repeatable depolarization followed by hyperpolarization of PVN neurons. The KRGE-induced responses were concentration- dependent and persisted in the presence of tetrodotoxin, a voltage sensitive Na+ channel blocker. The KRGE-induced responses were suppressed by 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (10 μM), a non-N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor antagonist, but not by picrotoxin, a type A gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor antagonist. The results indicate that KRG activates non-NMDA glutamate receptors of PVN neurons in mice, suggesting that KRG may be a candidate for use in regulation of stress responses by controlling autonomic nervous system and hormone secretion.
Keywords: Korean red ginseng, paraventricular nucleus neurons, patch-clamp techniques

© 2018 The Korean Society of Veterinary Science.

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