Chronic Treatment With Electroconvulsive Shock May Modulate the Immune Function of Macrophages

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid



To determine the effect of single and chronic electroconvulsive shock (ECS) administration on the immunoregulatory functions of macrophages.


Male Wistar rats received single or chronic treatment with ECS (150 mA, 50 Hz, 0.5 seconds) delivered through ear clips, once a day for 10 consecutive days, or sham ECS administered likewise. The rats were killed 24 hours after the last treatment, and peritoneal macrophages were cultured in vitro for 3 or 36 hours for a subsequent determination of their metabolic activity. The ability of macrophages to reduce Alamar Blue, 3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT), and nitrotetrazolium blue chloride and pinocytosis, adherence, and vitality, as well as synthesis of nitric oxide and arginase activity, was assessed.


We found statistically significant changes in the biological properties of macrophages which occurred after 36 hours of incubation, especially in cultures stimulated with lipopolysaccharide; in contrast, no differences were observed between groups assessed after 3 hours of incubation. Rats receiving chronic 10-fold ECS showed a substantial increase in the metabolic activity of macrophages, reflected as their ability to reduce Alamar Blue and MTT and to increase arginase activity, accompanied with a marked but statistically insignificant decrease in nitric oxide synthesis compared with respective controls.


Our results suggest that chronic treatment with ECS may induce long-lasting changes in the activity of peritoneal macrophages. Attenuation of their proinflammatory properties indicates that ECS can change the primarily immunoregulatory functions of macrophages.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles