Kainic acid

Technical documents: SDS CoA Datasheet

Product overview

Name Kainic acid
Purity >98%
Customer comments

We tested the Kainic acid and we are very happy with it. Hello Bio Kainic acid was used at 25 mg/kg i.p. and successfully induced status epilepticus. Verified customer, CNRS, France

Exactly as ordered - we ordered 50 mg kainic acid and it arrived swiftly. The batch display same EC50 and efficacy as all other batches, so we assume it is pure and an intact batch of the compound. Verified customer, University of Copenhagen

Very happy - service from Hello Bio is always friendly and quick. Kainic acid (KA) works as expected on AMPA receptors in HEK cells. Much cheaper than alternative suppliers. Verified customer, UCL

Description Prototypic, selective kainate receptor agonist. Potent excitant and neurotoxin.
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Kainic acid induced gamma oscillations
Kainic acid: Scientist Approved
Kainic Acid product vial image | Hello Bio

Biological Data

Biological description

Kainic acid is the prototypic, selective kainate receptor (KAR) agonist. Analog of L-Glutamate.

Kainic acid is a potent excitant and neurotoxin (shows ~30-fold more neurotoxic potency than L-Glutamate).

It induces various changes in vivo including recurrent seizures, behavioural changes, oxidative stress, glial activation and selective neuronal death.

Kainic acid exerts its neuroexcitatory action by binding to glutamate receptors to cause Ca2+ influx and triggering subsequent excitotoxic neuronal death pathway cascades.

It is widely used to model various neurodegenerative diseases and epilepsy.

Application notes

The kainate receptor (KAR) agonist kainic acid induces neuronal oscillations in the gamma frequency band (35-100Hz). KAR activation leads to synchronous activity of excitatory and inhibitory network firing. Kainic acid is commonly used at concentrations of 400-600 nM to induce oscillations in acute brain slices. At a concentration of 550 nM, kainic acid from Hello Bio induces a strong gamma frequency neuronal oscillation (approx. 35Hz) within the CA3 region of the rat hippocampus (see Fig 1 above). Oscillations were abolished following kainic acid washout.


#Protocol 1: Oscillations assay

  • Acute rat hippocampal slices were placed in an interface chamber and held at 30°C with a glass recording electrode placed in the CA3 region of the hippocampus.
  • Control basal activity was recorded for 1 hr in the presence of aCSF before continuous perfusion of aCSF containing kainic acid at 550nM to induce oscillations.
  • Oscillation activity was recorded once oscillations had stabilised (~2-3 hours). 
  • Kainic acid was then washed out and replaced with control aCSF. 
  • Data were analysed to create a power spectrum of the oscillation.


Solubility & Handling

Storage instructions Room temperature
Solubility overview Soluble in water (25mM, gentle warming)
Important This product is for RESEARCH USE ONLY and is not intended for therapeutic or diagnostic use. Not for human or veterinary use.



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More Info

Chemical Data

Purity >98%
Chemical name (2S,3S,4S)-Carboxy-4-(1-methylethenyl)-3-pyrrolidineacetic acid
Molecular Weight 213.23
Chemical structure Kainic acid  [487-79-6] Chemical Structure
Molecular Formula C10H15NO4
CAS Number 487-79-6
PubChem identifier 10255
Source Extracted from diginea simplex
InChi InChI=1S/C10H15NO4/c1-5(2)7-4-11-9(10(14)15)6(7)3-8(12)13/h6-7,9,11H,1,3-4H2,2H3,(H,12,13)(H,14,15)/t6-,7+,9-/m0/s1
MDL number MFCD00150833
Appearance White solid

References for Kainic acid

References are publications that support the biological activity of the product
  • Distinct modulation of the endocannabinoid system upon kainic acid-induced in vivo seizures and in vitro epileptiform bursting.

    Fezza F et al (2014) Mol Cell Neurosci 62 : 1-9.
  • Kainic acid-mediated excitotoxicity as a model for neurodegeneration.

    Wang Q et al (2005) Mol Neurobiol 31(1-3) : 3-16.
  • Pharmacological characterization of glutamatergic agonists and antagonists at recombinant human homomeric and heteromeric kainate receptors in vitro.

    Alt et al (2004) Neuropharmacology 46(6) : 793-806
  • Identification and characterization of the ligand binding subunit of a kainic acid receptor using monoclonal antibodies and peptide mapping.

    Hampson DR et al (1989) J Biol Chem 264(22) : 13329-35.

4 Item(s)

These publications cite the use of Kainic acid purchased from Hello Bio:
  • Oscillatory Deficits in the Sub-Chronic PCP Rat Model for Schizophrenia Are Reversed by mGlu5 Receptor-Positive Allosteric Modulators VU0409551 and VU0360172.

    Brown J et al (2023) Cells 12
    PubMedID: 36980260
  • Dopamine D2 receptors in mossy cells reduce excitatory transmission and are essential for hippocampal function.

    Gulfo MC et al (2023) bioRxiv
    PubMedID: 37205586
  • Human cortical interneurons optimized for grafting specifically integrate, abort seizures, and display prolonged efficacy without over-inhibition.

    Zhu Q et al (2022) Neuron
    PubMedID: 36626901
  • Activity-dependent LTP in the dentate gyrus promotes epileptic seizures

    Castillo et al (2021) bioRxiv https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.06.30.450628 : doi
  • Ictal activation of oxygen-conserving reflexes as a mechanism for sudden death in epilepsy

    Biggs EN et al (2021) Epilepsia 62(3) : 752-764
    PubMedID: 33570173

Items 1 to 5 of 13 total