Regulatory volume decrease in primary astrocyte cultures: Relevance to methylmercury neurotoxicity

D. Vitarella, H. K. Kimelberg, M. Aschner

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Because of the multiple and varied roles of astrocytes in brain homeostasis, primary cultures of astrocytes from neonatal rat brains have proven to be an excellent model for the study of in vitro cell functions and control mechanisms. In addition, their ability to preferentially sequester a number of heavy metals, such as methylmercury, has lead to intense research on their potential to modulate heavy metal-induced dysfunction. In the present review we briefly discuss the mechanisms associated with astrocytic swelling, an early and prominent event in brain injury, followed by a description on cellular mechanisms associated with regulatory volume decrease (RVD) processes, and specifically those likely to represent sensitive sites for MeHg-induced cytotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-124
Number of pages8
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Astrocytes
  • In Vitro
  • Methylmercury
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Regulatory Volume Decrease (RVD)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Toxicology


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