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The relationship between excitotoxicity and oxidative stress in the central nervous system

  • Author(s): Bondy, SC
  • LeBel, CP
  • et al.

Excitotoxicity and oxidative stress are two phenomena that have been repeatedly described as being implicated in a wide range of disorders of the nervous system. Such disorders include several common idiopathic neurological diseases, traumatic brain injury, and the consequences of exposure to certain neurotoxic agents. While there is evidence that metabolic derangements can laed to these adverse processes, and that these processes may synergize in their damaging effects, the degree of interdependence, and the causal relation between them is not clear. The intent of this review is to delineate potential mechanisms which may unit hyperexcitation to the excessive generation of reactive oxygen species. The degree of linkage between these events appears rather strong. It is likely that excitoxicity frequency leads to a pro-oxidant condition but that high rates of generation of reactive oxygen species are not invariably accompanied by a hyperexcited neuronal state Both excitoxic and 'oxidotoxic' states result from the failure of normal compensatory anti excitatory and antioxidant mechanisms to maintain cellular homeostatis. © 1993.

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