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Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Lower doses of isoflurane treatment has no beneficial effects in a rat model of intracerebral hemorrhage

Elga Esposito*, Emiri T Mandeville and Eng H Lo*

Author affiliations

Neuroprotection Research Laboratory, Departments of Neurology and Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA

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Citation and License

BMC Neuroscience 2013, 14:129  doi:10.1186/1471-2202-14-129

Published: 20 October 2013



Intracerebral hemorrhage is a subtype of stroke that has a poor prognosis without an adequate therapy. Recently, the use of anesthetics such as isoflurane has been shown to be protective after cerebral ischemia. However, the potential therapeutic effect of isoflurane after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) has not been fully explored.


In this study, male Sprague–Dawley rats (SD) were subjected to ICH and randomized into controls and 1.2% or 1.5% isoflurane posttreatment groups. Brain water content, neurological outcomes and matrix metalloproteinase-2 and -9 (MMP2-MMP9) plasma levels were quantified at 24 hours. Isoflurane treatment did not reduce brain edema compared with controls in any of the applied isoflurane concentrations. Moreover, consistent with this lack of effect on brain edema, isoflurane posttreatment did not affect neurological outcomes in any of the tests used. Plasma MMP levels did not change.


Our data suggested that there is no neuroprotection after isoflurane posttreatment in a rat model of ICH.

Anaesthesia; Neuroprotection; Brain edema; Intracerebral hemorrhage; Animal models