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Microcirculation. 2009 Nov;16(8):685-93. doi: 10.3109/10739680903164131.

The effect of ovariectomy and estrogen on penetrating brain arterioles and blood-brain barrier permeability.

Author information

1
Department of Neurology, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont, USA. Marilyn. Cipolla@uvm.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We investigated the effect of estrogen replacement on the structure and function of penetrating brain arterioles (PA) and blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Female ovariectomized Sprague-Dawley rats were replaced with estradiol (E(2)) and estriol (E(3)) (OVX + E; N=13) and compared to ovariectomized animals without replacement (OVX; N=14) and intact controls (CTL, proestrous; N=13). Passive and active diameters, percent tone, and passive distensibility of pressurized PA were compared. In addition, BBB permeability to Lucifer Yellow, a marker of transcellular transport, was compared in cerebral arteries.

RESULTS:

Ovariectomy increased myogenic tone in PA, compared to CTL, that was not ameliorated by estrogen treatment. Percent tone at 75 mmHg for CTL vs. OVX and OVX + E was 44+/-3% vs. 51+/-1% and 54+/-3% (P<0.01 vs. CTL for both). No differences were found in passive diameters or distensibility between the groups. BBB permeability increased 500% in OVX vs. CTL animals; however, estrogen replacement restored barrier properties: flux of Lucifer Yellow for CTL, OVX, and OVX + E was (ng/mL): 3.4+/-1.2, 20.2+/-5.3 (P<0.01 vs. CTL), and 6.15+/-1.2 (n.s.).

CONCLUSIONS:

These results suggest that estrogen replacement may not be beneficial for small-vessel disease in the brain, but may limit BBB disruption and edema under conditions that cause it.

PMID:
19905968
PMCID:
PMC2857914
DOI:
10.3109/10739680903164131
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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