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Methodological considerations for studies of brain glycogen.

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Glycogen stores in the brain have been recognized for decades, but the underlying physiological function of this energy reserve remains elusive. This uncertainty stems in part from several technical challenges inherent in the study of brain glycogen metabolism. These include low glycogen content in the brain, non-homogeneous labeling of glycogen by radiotracers, rapid glycogenolysis during postmortem tissue handling, and effects of the stress response on brain glycogen turnover. Here we briefly review the aspects of the glycogen structure and metabolism that bear on these technical challenges and present ways they can be addressed.

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