Neuropharmacology and NeurotoxicologyComparison of the neuroprotective effects of APV and bcl-2 in glutamate-induced cell deathWang, Yihong1,2; Jia, William1; Cynader, Max1Author Information 1Department of Ophthalmology, University of British Columbia, 2550 Willow Street, Vancouver BC, Canada, V5Z 3N9 2Corresponding Author: Yihong Wang Website publication 3 October 1997 Received 8 July 1997; accepted 17 August 1997 NeuroReport: October 20th, 1997 - Volume 8 - Issue 15 - p 3323-3326 Buy Abstract THE neuroprotective effects of the NMDA receptor blocker APV were compared with those of bcl-2 in a glutamate-induced excitotoxic cell death model in cultured rat cortical neurons. Exposure to 100 μM glutamate for 5 h caused ∼95% of the cultured neurons to die in 24 h. The NMDA-selective antagonist D-(−)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoate (APV) protected the neurons effectively when applied prior to or soon after glutamate treatment. However, infection with a viral vector expressing the proto-oncogene bcl-2 strongly protected neurons even if applied as late as 8 h following the glutamate insult. These data provides evidence that APV blocks an early stage of the death cascade in response to elevations of glutamate. By contrast bcl-2 appears to act at a fairly late stage in the cell death process and these results suggest a possible clinical role in treatment of ischemic brain disorders. © Lippincott-Raven Publishers.