"A detailed biophysical model for a neuron/astrocyte network is developed to explore mechanisms responsible for the initiation and propagation of cortical spreading depolarizations and the role of astrocytes in maintaining ion homeostasis, thereby preventing these pathological waves... properties of spreading depolarizations, such as wave speed and duration of depolarization, depend on several factors, including the neuron and astrocyte Na+-K+ ATPase pump strengths. In particular, we consider the neuroprotective role of astrocyte gap junction coupling. The model demonstrates that a syncytium of electrically coupled astrocytes can maintain a physiological membrane potential in the presence of an elevated extracellular K+ concentration and efficiently distribute the excess K+ across the syncytium."
Model Type: Channel/Receptor; Extracellular; Glia; Neuron or other electrically excitable cell
Cell Type(s): Astrocyte; Hodgkin-Huxley neuron
Currents: I K; I Na,p; Na/K pump
Model Concept(s): Spreading depolarization
Simulation Environment: C or C++ program; XPPAUT
Implementer(s): Terman, David [terman at math.ohio-state.edu]
Huguet G et al. (2016). Neuroprotective Role of Gap Junctions in a Neuron Astrocyte Network Model. Biophysical journal. 111 [PubMed]