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Anesthesiology. 2005 Nov;103(5):1006-14.

Isoflurane inhibits cardiac myocyte apoptosis during oxidative and inflammatory stress by activating Akt and enhancing Bcl-2 expression.

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  • 1Department of Anesthesiology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53226, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Volatile anesthetics attenuate apoptosis. The underlying mechanisms remain undefined. The authors tested whether isoflurane reduces apoptosis in cardiomyocytes subjected to oxidative or inflammatory stress by enhancing Akt and B-cell lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2).

METHODS:

Adult and neonatal rat ventricular myocytes and atrial HL-1 myocytes were exposed to hypoxia, hydrogen peroxide, or neutrophils with or without isoflurane pretreatment. The authors assessed cell damage and investigated apoptosis using mitochondrial cytochrome c release, caspase activity, and TUNEL assay. They determined expression of phospho-Akt and Bcl-2 and tested their involvement by blocking phospho-Akt with wortmannin and Bcl-2 with HA14-1.

RESULTS:

Isoflurane significantly reduced the cell damage and apoptosis induced by hypoxia, H2O2, and neutrophils. Isoflurane reduced hypoxia-induced mitochondrial cytochrome c release in HL-1 cells by 45 +/- 12% and caspase activity by 28 +/- 4%; in neonatal cells, it reduced caspase activity by 43 +/- 5% and TUNEL-positive cells by 50 +/- 2%. Isoflurane attenuated H2O2-induced caspase activity in HL-1 cells by 48 +/- 16% and TUNEL-positive cells by 78 +/- 3%; in neonatal cells, it reduced caspase activity by 30 +/- 3% and TUNEL-positive cells by 32 +/- 7%. In adult cardiomyocytes exposed to neutrophils, isoflurane decreased both mitochondrial cytochrome c and caspase activity by 47 +/- 3% and TUNEL-positive cells by 25 +/- 4%. Isoflurane enhanced phospho-Akt and Bcl-2 expression. Wortmannin and HA14-1 prevented the action of isoflurane (53 +/- 8% and 54 +/- 7% apoptotic cells vs. 18 +/- 1% without blockers).

CONCLUSIONS:

Isoflurane protects cardiomyocytes against apoptosis induced by hypoxia, H2O2, or activated neutrophils through Akt activation and increased Bcl-2 expression. This suggests that a reduction in apoptosis contributes to the cardioprotective effects of isoflurane.

PMID:
16249675
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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