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Acta Physiol Scand. 1981 Dec;113(4):437-45.

Extracellular ion concentrations during spreading depression and ischemia in the rat brain cortex.

Abstract

We compared interstitial ion concentrations in rat brain cortex during two conditions where pronounced changes are observed: spreading depression and ischemia. Initially, during the two phenomena, an increase of [K+]e from 3 to approximately 10 mM were observed, but only small changes of the other ion concentrations. Hereafter, [K+]e exhibited a rapid increase (2-3 s) to 55 mM, whereas [Na+]e rapidly decreased to 60 mM, [Cl-]e to 75 mM, and [Ca++]e to 0.08 mM. The changes were accompanied by a rapid negative shift in the local electrical potential. However, there were differences in the ionic events during the two phenomena. In spreading depression, the initial [K+]e increase took place in 5-10 s, but in ischemia it lasted 1-2 min. The ionic perturbations were spontaneously reverted in SD, but in ischemia they proceeded further and reached after 5 min (mM): [K+]e 75, [Na+]e 50, [Cl-]e 72, and [Ca++]e 0.06. The similar chain of ionic events during spreading depression and ischemia suggests a common mechanism for the ionic changes, probably involving changes of ionic permeability of brain cells.

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