Ceftriaxone is a beta-lactam antibiotic that increases the expression of the major glutamate transporter, GLT-1. As such, ceftriaxone ameliorates symptoms across multiple rodent models of neurological diseases and substance use disorders. However, the mechanism behind GLT-1 upregulation is unknown. The present review synthesizes this literature in order to identify commonalities in molecular changes. We find that ceftriaxone (200 mg/kg for at least two days) consistently restores GLT-1 expression in multiple rodent models of neurological disease, especially when GLT-1 is decreased in the disease model. The same dose given to healthy/drug-naive rodents does not reliably upregulate GLT-1 in any brain region except the hippocampus. Increased GLT-1 expression does not consistently arise from transcriptional regulation, and is likely to be due to trafficking changes. In addition to altered transporter expression, ceftriaxone ameliorates neuropathologies (e.g. tau, amyloid beta, cell death) and aberrant protein expression associated with a number of neurological disease models. Taken together, these results indicate that ceftriaxone remains a strong candidate for treatment of multiple disorders in the clinic.
Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.