Food for thought: fluctuations in brain extracellular glucose provide insight into the mechanisms of memory modulation.

Ewan C. McNay, Paul E. Gold

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

76 Scopus citations

Abstract

Extensive evidence indicates that peripheral or direct central glucose administration enhances cognitive processes in rodents and humans. These behavioral findings suggest that glucose acts directly on the brain to regulate neural processing, a function that seems incompatible with the traditional view that brain glucose levels are high and invariant except under extreme conditions. However, recent data suggest that the glucose levels of the brain's extracellular fluid are lower and more variable than previously supposed. In particular, the level of glucose in the extracellular fluid of a given brain area decreases substantially when a rat is performing a memory task for which the brain area is necessary. Together with results identifying downstream effects of such variance in glucose availability, the evidence leads to new thinking about glucose regulation of brain functions including memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)264-280
Number of pages17
JournalBehavioral and cognitive neuroscience reviews
Volume1
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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