In situ fluorescence imaging of glutamate-evoked mitochondrial Na+ responses in astrocytes.Glia 2006; 54(5):460-70GLIA
Astrocytes can experience large intracellular Na+ changes following the activation of the Na+-coupled glutamate transport. The present study investigated whether cytosolic Na+ changes are transmitted to mitochondria, which could therefore influence their function and contribute to the overall intracellular Na+ regulation. Mitochondrial Na+ (Na+(mit)) changes were monitored using the Na+-sensitive fluorescent probe CoroNa Red (CR) in intact primary cortical astrocytes, as opposed to the classical isolated mitochondria preparation. The mitochondrial localization and Na+ sensitivity of the dye were first verified and indicated that it can be safely used as a selective Na+(mit) indicator. We found by simultaneously monitoring cytosolic and mitochondrial Na+ using sodium-binding benzofuran isophthalate and CR, respectively, that glutamate-evoked cytosolic Na+ elevations are transmitted to mitochondria. The resting Na+(mit) concentration was estimated at 19.0 +/- 0.8 mM, reaching 30.1 +/- 1.2 mM during 200 microM glutamate application. Blockers of conductances potentially mediating Na+ entry (calcium uniporter, monovalent cation conductances, K+(ATP) channels) were not able to prevent the Na+(mit) response to glutamate. However, Ca2+ and its exchange with Na+ appear to play an important role in mediating mitochondrial Na+ entry as chelating intracellular Ca2+ with BAPTA or inhibiting Na+/Ca2+ exchanger with CGP-37157 diminished the Na+(mit) response. Moreover, intracellular Ca2+ increase achieved by photoactivation of caged Ca2+ also induced a Na+(mit) elevation. Inhibition of mitochondrial Na/H antiporter using ethylisopropyl-amiloride caused a steady increase in Na+(mit) without increasing cytosolic Na+, indicating that Na+ extrusion from mitochondria is mediated by these exchangers. Thus, mitochondria in intact astrocytes are equipped to efficiently sense cellular Na+ signals and to dynamically regulate their Na+ content.