Heat shock protein 72 expression and microtubule-associated protein 2 disappearance after hypoxia-ischemia in the developing rat brain

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

This study was intended to investigate the temporal changes in heat shock protein 72 expression and microtubule-associated protein 2 disappearance in rat brain at 2 different ages after hypoxic-ischemic insult.

STUDY DESIGN

Both 5-day-old and 14-day-old Wistar rats were subjected to unilateral common carotid artery ligation and hypoxia in 8% oxygen for 2 hours at 33[degree sign]C. Brain sections were examined sequentially for heat shock protein 72 expression at 0.5, 3, 6, 12, 24, 48, and 72 hours of recovery after hypoxia-ischemia and for microtubule-associated protein 2 disappearance at 0, 24, 48, and 72 hours of recovery and at 7 days of recovery after hypoxia-ischemia. Results of immunohistochemical staining for heat shock protein 72 and microtubule-associated protein 2 were used as markers for detection of early hypoxic-ischemic brain damage. Permanent neuronal damage was assessed with hematoxylin and eosin staining at 7 days after hypoxia.

RESULTS

In 5-day-old rats microtubule-associated protein 2 expression was lost as early as 0 hours after hypoxia-ischemia in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, with a peak at 48 hours after which expression recovered. Expression of heat shock protein 72 was detected in the ligated hemisphere at 0.5 hours after hypoxia-ischemia and peaked at 6 to 24 hours of recovery. In 14-day-old rats microtubule-associated protein 2 was stained in the cortex at 0 hours after hypoxia-ischemia but gradually disappeared in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus after 24 hours of recovery. The expression of heat shock protein 72 was not detected by 6 hours of recovery in the cerebral cortex and by 3 to 12 hours of recovery in the hippocampus, but heat shock protein 72 was persistently expressed in the cortex and hippocampus after 48 hours of recovery. Neuronal damage was significantly less in 5-day-old rats than in 14-day-old rats.

CONCLUSION

In 5-day-old rats hypoxia-ischemia causes earlier changes in heat shock protein 72 and microtubule-associated protein 2 immunostaining results and causes less severe brain damage than in 14-day-old rats. (Am J Obstet Gynecol 1999;180:1254-62.)

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