Chinese Medical Sciences Journal ›› 2011, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (1): 49-53.doi: 10.1016/S1001-9294(11)60019-9

• Original Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of Graded Hypothermia on Hypoxic-ischemic Brain Damage in the Neonatal Rat

Xiao-yan Xia1 and Yi-xin Xia2   

  1. 1Department of Obstetrics, Beijing Obstetrics and Gynecology Hospital , Capital Medical University , Beijing 100026, China 2Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, General Hospital of People’s Armed Police Forces, Beijing 100039, China
  • Received:2010-04-02 Revised:2011-04-18 Online:2011-04-18 Published:2011-04-18
  • Contact: Yi-xin Xia E-mail:xinyibj@
  • About author:Tel: 86-10-88276688,

Abstract: Objective To investigate the effect of graded hypothermia on neuropathologic alterations of neonatal rat brain after exposed to hypoxic-ischemic insult at 37°C, 33°C, 31°C, and 28°C, respectively, and to observe the effect of hypothermia on 72-kDa heat shock protein (HSP72) expression after hypoxic-ischemic insult. Methods Seven days old Wistar rats were subjected to unilateral common carotid artery ligation followed by exposure to hypoxia in 8% oxygen for 2 hours at 37°C, 33°C, 31°C, and 28°C, respectively. The brain temperature was monitored indirectly by inserting a mini-thermocouple probe into the temporal muscle during hypoxia. After hypoxia-ischemia their mortality was assessed. Neuronal damage was assessed with HE staining 72 hours after hypoxia. HSP72 expression at 0.5, 24, and 72 hours of recovery was immunohistochemically assessed using a monoclonal antibody to HSP72. Results Hypoxia-ischemia caused 10.5% (2/19) of mortality in rat of 37°C group, but no death occurred in 33°C, 31°C or 28°C groups. HE staining showed neuropathologic damage was extensive in rats exposed to hypoxia-ischemia at 37°C (more than 80.0%). The incidence of severe brain damage was significantly decreased in 33°C (53.3%) and 31°C groups (44.4%), and no histologic injury was seen in the 28°C group of rats. Expression of HSP72 was manifest and persistent in the rat brain of 37°C group, but minimum in the rat brain of 28°C group. Conclusion Mild and moderate hypothermia might prevent cerebral visible neuropathologic damage associated with hypoxic-ischemic injury by decreasing stress response.

Key words: hypoxia-ischemia, brain, rat, hypothermia, heat shockprotein 72

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