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J Neurol Sci. 1983 Jun;59(3):305-22.

Regional patterns of blood-brain barrier breakdown during epileptiform seizures induced by various convulsive agents.


In unrestrained rabbits with generalized epileptic seizures induced by systemic application of convulsant drugs, regional changes in blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability to macromolecules were investigated using Evans Blue (EB) as indicator. BBB leakage due to seizures was present only in animals in which the mean arterial blood pressure rose about 50 mm Hg with the onset of convulsive motor activity. However, a blood pressure increase was not necessarily associated with the occurrence of BBB opening. Pentylenetetrazole-induced seizures resulted in bilateral EB leakage mainly in the hypothalamus, with exception of the mammillary bodies, and the preoptic area, and they were associated, in most cases, with an intensive staining of the cerebellum and also of the midbrain tegmentum. In contrast, seizures due to the GABA receptor blocker bicuculline brought about a penetration of the dye in the region of the pallidum, whereas the GABA synthesis inhibitor methoxypyridoxine produced BBB breakdown in the hippocampus. Methionine-sulfoximine convulsions resulted in a selective stain of the corpora mammillaria, and kainic acid induced a diffuse leakage in neocortical brain areas. As a rule, BBB breakdown was bilateral and confined to anatomically limited brain areas, suggesting that BBB integrity was not only disturbed by abrupt increases in the intraluminal pressure, but was also influenced from the brain tissue. The fluorescence microscopic observations revealed that the tracer penetrated into the neuropil through larger vessels. It had the tendency to accumulate in neurons. In case of the hippocampus, CA2 pyramidal cells revealed more intense uptake of EB than those of the adjacent fields.

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