The effect of intrahippocampal injection of kainic acid on corticosterone release in rats
The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the hippocampus exerts a modulatory effect on the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Kainic acid was stereotaxically injected into the CA1 pyramidal cell layer of the dorsal hippocampus, causing histological and behavioural changes typical of kainic acid toxicity. The CA3 pyramidal cells of the dorsal hippocampus were selectively lesioned. Rats treated with kainic acid were hyperactive, executed clockwise rotatory movements and displayed epileptic seizures. The acute excitatory effect of kainic acid on glutamatergic receptors in the hippocampus resulted in an elevation in plasma corticosterone levels, suggesting a stimulation of HPA axis activity. Direct or indirect stimulation of the CA1 pyramidal cells of the dorsal hippocampus appeared to have caused the increase in corticosterone secretion.