Temporal thresholds for neocortical infarction in rats subjected to reversible focal cerebral ischemia.
We investigated the temporal threshold for focal cerebral infarction in the spontaneously hypertensive rat. The right middle cerebral artery and common carotid artery were occluded for 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or 24 hours, and all the animals were sacrificed 24 hours after the onset of ischemia. Cortical infarct volumes and edema volumes were quantified in serial frozen sections of hematoxylin and eosin-stained tissue using image analysis. Upon occlusion, blood flow in the core of the ischemic zone, measured with laser-Doppler flowmetry, fell to a mean +/- standard deviation of 21 +/- 7% of the preocclusion baseline value (n = 26). During the first hour of ischemia, blood flow in the densely ischemic zone rose to 27 +/- 8% of baseline (n = 25). Release of the middle cerebral artery and common carotid artery occlusions rapidly restored cortical blood flow to 213 +/- 83% of baseline (n = 21). Focal ischemia of 1 hour's duration caused little or no infarction, while ischemic intervals of 2 and 3 hours produced successively larger volumes of infarcted cortex. Ischemic intervals of 3-4 hours' duration followed by approximately 20 hours of recirculation yielded infarct volumes that were not significantly different from those after 24 hours of permanent focal ischemia. The results indicate that 3-4 hours of focal cerebral ischemia in this rat model is sufficient to attain maximal infarction and suggest that recirculation or pharmacological interventions after this time will provide little benefit.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association