Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.526, No.3, 786-792, 2020
Aberrant expression of Nav1.6 in the cochlear nucleus correlates with salicylate-induced tinnitus in rats
Hyperactivity in cochlear nucleus (CN) is one of the major neural correlates for tinnitus induction, yet the molecular factors that participate in the neuronal hyperexcitability remain unclear. The present study showed that acute and chronic administrations of salicylate were both capable of inducing reversible tinnitus in rats. The number of GAD 65/67-immunoreactive neurons in the AVCN and DCN was decreased, while the number of VGLUT 1/2-immunoreactive neurons in the AVCN and DCN was increased when rats were experiencing tinnitus, providing evidence for excitatory-inhibitory imbalance in CN is correlated with tinnitus. Interestingly, the expression level of Nav1.6, an important subtype of voltage-gated sodium channels was significantly increased in the DCN and AVCN of rats experiencing tinnitus, the up-regulation of Nav1.6 was returned to normal level following the disappearance of tinnitus. Double-labeling experiments revealed that Nav1.6 expression was down-regulated in the GAD 65/67-positive neurons in the DCN and AVCN of rats experiencing tinnitus. Notably, the percentage of co-localization of Nav1.6 and NeuN-labeling fusiform neurons was markedly increased in the DCN during tinnitus. These findings uncover the tinnitus-associated alteration in Nav1.6, a potential key contributor that can lead to hyperexcitability in CN and contribute to salicylate-induced tinnitus. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.