Dl-3-n-butylphthalide attenuates brain injury caused by cortical infarction accompanied by cranial venous drainage disturbance

Background

Cerebral venous disorder may have a harmful effect on ischaemic stroke; however, the underlying mechanism remains to be elucidated. Although Dl-3-n-butylphthalide is a multitarget agent for antiischaemic stroke, its neuroprotective role in brain ischaemia accompanied by brain venous disturbance remains unclear. In this study, we induced cerebral venous disturbance by the occlusion of bilateral external jugular veins (EJVs) to explore the potential mechanism of the adverse effects of cerebrovenous disorders in cerebral infarction and explore the protective effect of Dl-3-n-butylphthalide on cerebral infarction accompanied through cerebral venous disturbance.

Methods

Cerebral venous disturbance was induced in Sprague-Dawley rats through the permanent occlusion of bilateral EJVs, and cerebral ischaemic stroke was induced through the permanent occlusion of the right cortical branches of the middle cerebral artery. 2,3,5-triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining, MRI, Evans blue extravasation and behavioural test were performed to evaluate infarction volume, cerebral blood flow (CBF), blood–brain barrier (BBB) integrity and neurological function. Immunofluorescence staining and western blot analysis were performed to detect loss of neuron, endothelial cells, pericytes and tight junctions.

Results

Bilateral EJVs occlusion did not cause cerebral infarction; however, it increased the infarction volume compared with the simple middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) group, accompanied by severe neuron loss, worse neurological function, lower CBF, increased EJVs pressure, exacerbated Evans blue extravasation and brain oedema, as well as attenuated angiogenesis. Dl-3-n-butylphthalide displayed a neuroprotective effect in rats with MCAO accompanied by EJVs occlusion by reducing neuron loss, accelerating CBF restoration, promoting angiogenesis and relieving BBB damage.

Conclusion

Bilateral EJVs occlusion did not significantly affect normal rats but aggravated brain damage in the case of ischaemic stroke. Dl-3-n-butylphthalide treatment plays a neuroprotective role in rats with MCAO accompanied by EJVs occlusion, mainly due to the promotion of CBF restoration and BBB protection.

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