We conducted a pixel-based analysis of the acute hemodynamic and metabolic determinants of infarctive histopathology in a reproducible model of temporary (2-hour) middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) produced in rats by an intraluminal suture. Three-dimensional averaged image data sets of local cerebral blood flow (LCBF) and glucose utilization (LCMRglc) acquired in the companion study (Belayev et al., 1997) either at the end of a 2-hour period of MCAO or after 1 hour of recirculation were comapped (using digitized atlas-templates) with data sets depicting the frequency of histological infarction in a matched animal group (n = 8) in which 2 hours of MCAO was followed by 3-day survival, sequential neuro-behavioral examinations, and perfusion-fixation and paraffin-embedding of brains for light-microscopic analysis. All rats developed marked postural-reflex and forelimb-placing deficits at 60 minutes of MCAO, signifying high-grade ischemia. Tactile placing deficits persisted during the 72-hour observation period while visual placing and postural-reflex abnormalities variably improved. Comapping of LCBF and histopathology showed that in those pixels destined to undergo infarction, LCBF measured at 2 hours of MCAO showed a sharp distributional peak centered at 0.14 mL/g/min. In 70% of pixels destined to infarct, LCBF at 2 hours of MCAO was 0.24 mL/g/min or below, and in 89% LCBF was below 0.47 mL/g/min (the upper limits of the ischemic core and penumbra, respectively, as defined in the companion study [Belayev et al., 1997]). Local cerebral glucose utilization measured at ~1 hour after 2 hours of MCAO was distributed bimodally in the previously ischemic hemisphere. The major peak, at 22 μmol/100 g/min, coincided exactly with the distribution peak of pixels destined to undergo infarction, while in pixels with a zero probability of infarction, LCMRglc was higher by 12 to 13 μmol/100 g/min. These results indicate that local blood flow at 2 hours of MCAO is a robust predictor of eventual infarction. Pixels with ischemic-core levels of LCBF (0% to 20% of control) have a 96% probability of infarction, while the fate of the penumbra is more heterogeneous: below LCBF of 0.35 mL/g/min, the probability of infarction is 92%, while approximately 20% pixels in the upper-penumbral LCBF range (30% to 40% of control) escape infarction. Our data strongly support the view that the likelihood of infarction within the ischemic penumbra is highly influenced by very subtle differences in early perfusion.
- Cerebral infarction
- Focal cerebral ischemia
- Image- processing
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism