The mechanism of spinal cord injury has been thought to be related with tissue ischemia, and spinal motor neuron cells are suggested to be vulnerable to ischemia. To evaluate the mechanism of such vulnerability of motor neurons, we attempted to make a reproducible model of rabbit spinal cord ischemia. Using this model, the inductions of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-k) and serine-threonine kinase (Akt) were investigated with immunohistochemical analyses for up to 7 days of the reperfusion following 15 min of ischemia in rabbit spinal cord. It has been demonstrated that both PI3-k and its downstream effector, Akt mediate growth factor-induced neuronal survival. Spinal cord sections from animals sacrificed at 8 h, 1, 2, and 7 days following the 15 min of ischemia were immunohistochemically evaluated using monoclonal antibodies for PI3-k and Akt. Following the 15 min of ischemia, the majority of the motor neurons showed selective cell death at 7 days of reperfusion. Immunoreactivity of PI3-k and Akt were induced at 8 h of reperfusion selectively in motor neuron cells. No glial cells and inter neurons were stained in the spinal cord sections. The activation of PI3-k and Akt protein at the early stage of reperfusion may be one of the factors responsible for the delay in neuronal death after spinal cord ischemia.
- Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase
- Serine-threonine kinase
- Spinal cord ischemia
ASJC Scopus subject areas