Experimental subarachnoid haemorrhage
ultrastructure of cerebral vessels
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Summary Transmission electron microscopy of the middle cerebral artery from cats exposed to subarachnoid injection of blood 3 and 7 days before, showed several damage of the vascular ultrastructure. The intima was thickened with swelling and vacuolization of endothelial cells, with a plump appearance and disruption of tight junctions. The cellular surface was corrugated and the subendothelial space contained proliferating and vacuolated smooth muscle cells capped by elastin and collagen fibres. The internal elastic lamina was also corrugated and disrupted. The adventitial changes were axonic cytoplasmic and mitochondrial swelling, virtual absence of synaptic vesicles, and disruption of the outer axonal membrane, suggesting denervation of cerebral vessels. With administration of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA), similar ultrastructural changes were observed in the adventitia. These observations indicate that denervation induced by subarachnoid bleeding could be involved in the pathophysiology of cerebrovascular spasm. Subarachnoid haemorrhage, but not 6-OHDA, affects also intima and tunica media, suggesting other mechanisms, in addition to denervation, can participate in the vasospasm.
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