Time-dependent changes in cerebral choline and acetylcholine induced by transient global ischemia in rats.
We occluded the carotid and vertebral arteries of 12 rats for 15 minutes to measure the brain concentrations of choline and acetylcholine and cerebral blood flow at the end of the ischemic period or 15, 30, or 150 minutes after circulation was reestablished. The animals were sacrificed with microwave radiation focused to the head immediately after a brief infusion of [14C]iodoantipyrine with rapid sampling of arterial blood. Brain tissue samples were extracted with ether to separate the tracer, which was subsequently measured by liquid scintillation counting and used to calculate local cerebral blood flow. The aqueous phase was then processed for the measurement of choline and acetylcholine concentrations by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. The results showed a large increase in tissue choline content and a decrease in tissue acetylcholine content during ischemia. During recirculation, choline levels progressively declined, reaching levels lower than those in four control rats after 150 minutes of recirculation for most brain regions. A reciprocal relation between the brain choline concentration and local cerebral blood flow was found. Acetylcholine levels showed an initial rebound to greater than control during recirculation, with subsequent normalization. Brain acetylcholine concentration was positively correlated with brain choline concentration, provided that cerebral blood flow was greater than 0.3 ml x g-1 x min-1. Because tissue free choline was depleted in most brain regions 150 minutes after transient ischemia, we speculate that prolonged ischemia may produce a greater depletion of tissue free choline with a resulting decline in tissue acetylcholine. This could play an important role in the cognitive deficit associated with vascular dementia.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association