Neural regeneration research

Dantrolene enhances the protective effect of hypothermia on cerebral cortex neurons.

PMID 26487856


Therapeutic hypothermia is the most promising non-pharmacological neuroprotective strategy against ischemic injury. However, shivering is the most common adverse reaction. Many studies have shown that dantrolene is neuroprotective in in vitro and in vivo ischemic injury models. In addition to its neuroprotective effect, dantrolene neutralizes the adverse reaction of hypothermia. Dantrolene may be an effective adjunctive therapy to enhance the neuroprotection of hypothermia in treating ischemic stroke. Cortical neurons isolated from rat fetuses were exposed to 90 minutes of oxygen-glucose deprivation followed by reoxygenation. Neurons were treated with 40 μM dantrolene, hypothermia (at 33°C), or the combination of both for 12 hours. Results revealed that the combination of dantrolene and hypothermia increased neuronal survival and the mitochondrial membrane potential, and reduced intracellular active oxygen cytoplasmic histone-associated DNA fragmentation, and apoptosis. Furthermore, improvements in cell morphology were observed. The combined treatment enhanced these responses compared with either treatment alone. These findings indicate that dantrolene may be used as an effective adjunctive therapy to enhance the neuroprotective effects of hypothermia in ischemic stroke.