Clinical and experimental evidence suggests that spreading depolarizations (SD) usually occur in patients with ischemic or hemorrhagic stroke when the gray matter of the brain is affected. In this study, we evaluated spatiotemporal changes of cerebral blood flow (CBF) during middle cerebral artery (MCA) occlusion and examined the relationship between SD occurrence and cerebral infarct development. In male isoflurane-anesthetized C57BL/6J mice, CBF changes over the ipsilateral parietal bone were recorded by laser speckle flowgraphy during and after transient (45 min, n = 22) or permanent occlusion (n = 22) of the distal MCA. Infarct volume was evaluated 24 hr after the operation. Upon MCA occlusion, CBF decreased by −55.6 ± 8.5 % in the lowest CBF and linearly recovered with increasing distance from the region. At 1–10 min after onset of occlusion, SD occurred and concentrically propagated from the core region, showing a decrease of CBF in the whole observed area along with a transient hyperemia and oligemia in the normal region. SD spontaneously re-occurred and propagated around the ischemic area in 37 % of mice, accompanied with a marked decrease of CBF in the core or a marked increase of CBF in the normal region. The CBF response to SDs gradually changed from the core to the normal area, depending upon the distance from the core region. Infarction was not observed in transiently (n = 2) or permanently (n = 4) occluded mice without SD. The infarct area tended to be larger with increasing number of SDs in transiently occluded mice. In conclusion, our findings suggest that the occurrence of SD during ischemia might elicit infarct formation and/or influence infarct development.
ASJC Scopus subject areas