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Surgery. 2015 May;157(5):924-33. doi: 10.1016/j.surg.2014.12.013. Epub 2015 Feb 7.

Sevoflurane protects against intestinal ischemia-reperfusion injury partly by phosphatidylinositol 3 kinases/Akt pathway in rats.

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Department of Anesthesiology, ChanCheng Center Hospital, Foshan, China.
Department of Anesthesiology, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China.
Department of Anesthesiology, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China.
Department of Anesthesiology, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China. Electronic address:



Intestinal ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) is a clinical challenge with high morbidity and mortality, leading to intestine damage, systemic inflammation, and multiorgan failure. Previous research has shown that the inhaled anesthetic sevoflurane protects various organs from IRI. However, whether sevoflurane protects against intestinal IRI and which application condition is the most effective are not completely clear. Thus, we investigated the effects of sevoflurane on intestinal IRI with sevoflurane given before, during or after intestinal ischemia, and the role of phosphatidylinositol 3 kinases (PI3K)/Akt pathway in these effects.


Rat model of intestinal ischemia-reperfusion (IR) was used in this study. The superior mesenteric artery was clamped for 60 minutes followed by 120 minutes of reperfusion. Sevoflurane at 0.25, 0.5, and 1.0 minimum alveolar concentration (MAC) was inhaled for 30 minutes before, during, or after ischemic insult. LY294002, a PI3K inhibitor, was injected intraperitoneally before sevoflurane inhalation.


Intestinal IR caused a significant decrease of mean arterial blood pressure, severe intestinal mucosa injury and epithelial cell apoptosis, downregulation of the levels of phospho-Akt and phospho-Bad proteins. Exposure to 0.5 or 1.0 MAC sevoflurane before or after intestinal ischemia or 0.5 MAC during intestinal ischemia significantly ameliorated IR-induced histopathologic changes and decreased Chiu's scores. Pretreatment with 0.5 MAC sevoflurane also inhibited intestinal IR-induced increase of terminal deoxyribonucleotide transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling-positive cells and activation of caspase-3 and restored expression of phospho-Akt and phospho-Bad. LY294002 partly blocked the protective effects induced by 0.5 MAC sevoflurane pretreatment.


Our results suggest that sevoflurane inhalation at clinical related concentration before, during, or after ischemia protects against IR-induced intestinal injury. The pretreatment-induced protection was partly mediated by inhibiting intestinal mucosal epithelial apoptosis via activation of the PI3K/Akt pathway.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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