Comparison of the effects of volatile anesthetics on brain glucose metabolism in rats

W. A. Kofke, R. A. Hawkins, D. W. Davis, J. F. Biebuyck

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27 Scopus citations


The objective of this investigation was to compare the effects of the commonly used volatile anesthetics on concentrations of plasma and cerebral glucose and cerebral intermediary metabolites. Fasted male Long-Evans rats were anesthetized with a volatile anesthetic and, after tracheostomy and paralysis, were mechanically ventilated. Each of three groups received one MAC concentration of anesthesia with halothane, enflurane, or isoflurane. At the end of 60-75 min of anesthesia, blood was sampled for arterial blood gas and plasma glucose analysis, and the brain was rapidly sampled and frozen for analysis of energy metabolites. Physiologic variables were maintained as follows: Pa(CO2) 30-40 mmHg, pHa 7.20-7.40, Pa(O2) > 60 mmHg, MAP > 60 mmHg, and rectal temperature 37.5-38.5° C. Mean plasma glucose concentrations in the three groups were as follows (μMol/ml ± SEM): halothane, 7.45 ± .62; enflurane, 6.95 ± .22; isoflurane, 10.11 ± 1.00. Mean brain glucose concentrations in the three groups were (μMol/gm wet weight): halothane, 2.04 ± .20; enflurane, 2.07 ± .26; isoflurane, 3.04 ± .31. Plasma and brain glucose levels were significantly increased in the isoflurane group compared to the other two groups (P < .05) with no differences occurring in the brain/plasma glucose ratio among the three groups. No differences were present between groups in brain lactate, pyruvate, fructose diphosphate, malate, alpha-ketoglutarate, phosphocreatine, or adenine nucleotides. Thus, at one MAC concentration, major differences between volatile anesthetics on brain injury availability are not present, although isoflurane raised cerebral glucose levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)810-813
Number of pages4
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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