Energy metabolism and in vivo cytochrome c oxidase redox relationships in hypoxic rat brain.
Rats were subjected to graded arterial hypoxia while we measured changes in the oxidation level of cytochrome c oxidase (cytochrome aa3) in the brain by a non-invasive, optical technique. The experiments were terminated at different arterial oxygen tensions (hypoxic levels) and the in vivo observations were compared with in vitro measured changes in metabolites known to reflect limitations in cellular aerobic energy production, e.g. glucose, pyruvate, lactate, phosphocreatine, ATP and ADP. Using absorption changes at 605 nm, in vivo cytochrome aa3 was 46% reduced in normoxia as determined by the range between the maximal oxidation level attained with animals breathing 85% O2 + 15% CO2 and maximal reduction with anoxia (100% N2). Hypoxia reduced cytochrome aa3 to levels of 52, 67, 76, and 84% at mean PaO2 values of 53, 39, 35 and 28 mm Hg, respectively. These increases in reduced cytochrome correlated significantly (r = 0.94) with cortical phosphocreatine depletion, lactate production, and increases in the lactate/pyruvate ratio. However, there were no significant changes in ATP or ADP. Rats did not survive below an FIO2 of 7% because of a precipitous fall in arterial blood pressure. Hypoxically-induced cerebral isoelectricity was coincident with a 50% increase in the cytochrome reduction level (to 73% of the total range defined above). Our results indicate that in vivo monitoring of the reduction level of cytochrome aa3 provides an early, continuous, and direct measure of intracellular oxygen insufficiency at levels which adversely affect aerobic energy production.
Sylvia, AL; Piantadosi, CA; Jöbsis-VanderVliet, FF
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