To ascertain the tempo of progression to irreversible injury in focal ischemia, we subjected halothane-anesthetized Sprague-Dawley rats to photochemically induced distal middle cerebral artery occlusion (dMCAO) combined with permanent ipsilateral and 1 h contralateral common carotid artery occlusions. Head temperature was maintained at 36°C. At times centered at either 1.5 or 3 h post-dMCAO, the rate of local glucose metabolism (ICMRgl) was measured by 2-deoxyglucose autoradiography, and cytoskeletal proteolysis was assessed regionally by an immunoblotting procedure to detect spectrin breakdown products. At 1.5 h (n = 5), the cortical ischemic core was already severely hypometabolic (ICMRgl 15.5 ± 10.8 μmol 100 g-1 min-1, mean ± SD), whereas the cortical penumbral zone was hypermetabolic (69.0 ± 9.7). (The lumped constant was verified to be unchanged by methylglucose studies.) Neutral red pH studies at this time point showed that both the core and penumbralzones were equally acidotic. By 3 h post-dMCAO (n = 6), ICMRgl in the penumbral zone had fallen to low levels (15.4 ± 2.2 μmol 100 g-1 min-1) equal to those of the ischemic core (16.7 ± 4.5). Correspondingly, spectrin breakdown in the ischemic core was advanced at both 2 and 3.5 h post-dMCAO (36 ± 18% and 33 ± 18% of total spectrin, respectively), whereas in the penumbral zone spectrin breakdown was less extensive and more highly variable at both times (22 ± 23% and 29 ± 16%). We conclude that irreversible deterioration of the ischemic core, as evidenced by the onset of local cytoskeletal proteolysis, begins within 2 h of middle cerebral artery occlusion. In the ischemic penumbra, the transition from glucose hyper- to hypometabolism occurs by 3.5 h and is associated with a milder and more variable degree of spectrin breakdown.
- Middle cerebral artery occlusion
- Neutral red
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism