Increased susceptibility to osmotic disruption of the blood-brain barrier in chronic hypertension.
We examined the effects of chronic hypertension and acute reduction of arterial pressure on the susceptibility of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) to disruption. The BBB was disrupted with an intracarotid injection of 1.6 M arabinose in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR), stroke-prone SHR (SHRSP), and normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats. Permeability of the BBB was determined from the ratio of 125I-albumin in brain to 125I-albumin in blood. When the BBB was intact, permeability was less than 0.4%. After hypertonic arabinose, permeability of the BBB was greater (mean +/- SE) in SHRSP (17.6% +/- 1.6%) and in SHR (21.1% +/- 3.1%) than in WKY (10.3% +/- 2.4%) (p less than 0.05). When arterial pressure of SHRSP was reduced acutely with nitroprusside before arabinose, the BBB permeability to albumin was not reduced (21.5% +/- 1.5%). In other rats, we examined survival after osmotic disruption. In SHRSP, 14 of 15 rats died within 1 day after osmotic disruption with marked cerebral edema. In WKY, four of 15 rats died (p less than 0.05 vs SHRSP). When arterial pressure of SHRSP was reduced before arabinose, mortality was reduced to six of 15 (p less than 0.05 vs untreated SHRSP). We conclude that the BBB in SHRSP has enhanced vulnerability that is detrimental to survival. Reduction of arterial pressure improves survival in SHRSP without affecting BBB permeability to albumin.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
- Copyright © 1984 by American Heart Association