Introduction: Pre-clinically, safety risk assessment of a drug is primarily tested in vivo using functional evaluation of adult animals while the mechanistic etiology of drug-induced CNS adverse effects is often uncharacterized. In vitro electrophysiology may provide a better understanding of drug effects without additional animal use. However, in vitro protocols are typically designed for using embryonic or juvenile animals. Methods: We examined whether brain tissue isolated from adult rats (3–5 months old) and adult non-human primates (NHPs) (2–8 years old) can generate qualitatively equivalent readouts for electrophysiology to characterize AMPAR synaptic and single channel currents. We used a known positive AMPAR allosteric modulator (LY451395) to template a response profile and provide proof-of-concept data to assess responses of these native AMPARs in a drug context. Results: Brain slices from adult animals provided a support to measure AMPAR-driven excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs), and can be dissociated into primary neuronal cultures for AMPAR single channel characterization. Additionally, similarities and differences in AMPAR basal kinetics and responses to LY451395 were seen between the two animal species. Discussion: Glutamatergic synaptic activity and AMPAR biophysical properties in adult animals may be used to characterize test-article–mediated alterations in CNS responses. The use of older animals opens the possibility for in vivo test-article administration, either acutely or repeatedly, before in vitro electrophysiological assessment in order to reveal cumulative or delayed-onset effects, adding versatility to safety pharmacology assessment of the CNS.
|Journal||Journal of pharmacological and toxicological methods|
|Publication status||Published - Sept 2020|
- Excitatory neurotransmission
- In vitro
- Safety pharmacology