Blood-brain barrier permeability after gamma whole-body irradiation: an in vivo microdialysis study

Can J Physiol Pharmacol. 2002 Jul;80(7):670-8. doi: 10.1139/y02-070.


The effects of total-body irradiation on the permeability of rat striatal blood-brain barrier (BBB) to [3H]alpha-aminoisobutyric acid (AIBA) and [14C]sucrose were investigated using the microdialysis technique. Seven days, 3 and 6 weeks, and 3, 5, and 8 months after gamma exposure at a dose of 4.5 Gy, no modification of the permeability to both [3H]AIBA and [14C]sucrose was observed. But, in the course of the initial syndrome, we observed a significant but transient increase in the BBB permeability to the two markers between 3 and 17 h after exposure. A secondary transient "opening" of the BBB to [14C]sucrose was noticed about 28 h following irradiation without the corresponding increase in BBB permeability to [3H]AIBA. On the contrary, the transport of [3H]AIBA through the BBB was decreased between 33 and 47 h postradiation. In conclusion, our experiments showed early modifications of BBB permeability after a moderate-dose whole-body exposure. Confirmation of these results with other tracers, in another experimental model or in humans, would have clinical applications for designing appropriate pharmacotherapy in radiotherapy and treatment of accidental overexposure.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aminobutyrates / pharmacokinetics
  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / radiation effects*
  • Brain Chemistry / radiation effects*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Radiation
  • Gamma Rays*
  • Male
  • Microdialysis
  • Neostriatum / metabolism
  • Neostriatum / radiation effects
  • Radiation Effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Sucrose / pharmacokinetics
  • Whole-Body Irradiation*


  • Aminobutyrates
  • Biomarkers
  • Sucrose