Food for thought: Impact of metabolism on neuronal excitability

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Abstract

Neuronal excitability is a highly demanding process that requires high amounts of energy and needs to be exquisitely regulated. For this reason, brain cells display active energy metabolism to support their activity. Independently of their roles as energy substrates, compelling evidence shows that the nature of the fuels that neurons use contribute to fine-tune neuronal excitability. Crosstalk of neurons with glial populations also plays a prominent role in shaping metabolic flow in the brain. In this review, we provide an overview on how different carbon substrates and metabolic pathways impact neurotransmission, and the potential implications for neurological disorders in which neuronal excitability is deregulated, such as epilepsy.

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