Neuropathologic changes in the gerbil brain after chronic hypoperfusion.
An animal model has been developed to elucidate the pathological changes in brain cytoskeletal proteins during chronic hypoperfusion.
Newly designed coiled clips were placed around both carotid arteries of Mongolian gerbils (n = 10) to cause stenosis without occlusion. Those gerbils showing impaired learning ability by the passive avoidance paradigm were killed for neuropathologic study after 12 weeks.
The brains showed ventricular dilatation, cortical atrophy, and rarefaction of the white matter. Immunoreactivity to anti-microtubule-associated protein 2 antibody in the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus was diminished, indicating dendritic changes of neurons. In the thalamic axonal regions, staining with anti-neurofilament 200K protein antibody was increased, suggesting increased amounts of neurofilament proteins or increased phosphorylation of the protein. Increased immunoreactivity to anti-glial fibrillary acidic protein antibody was observed in a wedge-shaped configuration, corresponding to the border zone of perfusion by small vessels.
These findings suggest that changes in the cytoskeletal proteins in dendrites, axons, and glial cells may cause neuronal death under conditions of chronic cerebral hypoperfusion.
- Copyright © 1993 by American Heart Association