Background and Purpose: We have tested the hypothesis that platelet-derived serotonin is released into the bloodstream during cerebrovascular thrombosis. Methods: Nonocclusive common carotid artery thrombosis was produced photochemically in 22 anesthetized adult male Wistar rats using the photosensitizing dye rose bengal and irradiation with an argon-pumped dye laser. Plasma serotonin levels were recorded before, during, and after photothrombosis by intra-arterial in vivo microdialysis with the probe placed distal to the site of thrombosis. Results: During and immediately after the common carotid artery thrombosis, serotonin levels increased significantly to a peak value of 781 nmol/l (p<0.001 by analysis of variance), representing a 15-fold increase compared with baseline levels. The increased serotonin levels gradually decreased but remained significantly elevated for 90 minutes. Ultrastructural analysis of the carotid thrombi identified a dense mass of aggregated platelets at various stages of degranulation. Conclusions: These results are the first to demonstrate directly that serotonin accumulation occurs in plasma during and after the acute phase of common carotid artery thrombosis. Increased plasma serotonin levels may play a major role in the cerebral blood flow and blood-brain barrier abnormalities previously documented in this model of large-vessel thrombotic stroke.
- Carotid arteries
- Cerebral ischemia, transient
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine