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Effects of local irradiation and i.v. methotrexate on brain morphology in rabbits early changes

Effects of local irradiation and i.v. methotrexate on brain morphology in rabbits early changes

Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology 113(3): 235-240

Brain damage following cranial radiation therapy can be crippling or even life-threatening and has been studied in both patients and animals. An additional toxic effect of chemotherapy has been found in children, who died following brain irradiation and systemic chemotherapy for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia. To study the interaction of radiation and drugs on brain tissue, we treated rabbits with brain irradiation and/or i.v. methotrexate. For a period of up to 3 months following radiation therapy, brain morphology was compared in seven treatment groups. Weekly doses of methotrexate administered i.v. produced no brain damage. Histological examination showed myelin swelling and beading 14 weeks after fractionated brain irradiation with 24 Gy. Combination of brain irradiation and methotrexate produced additional hypertrophy of microglia and pyknosis of adventitial cells. In none of these groups, even after doses of 48 Gy brain irradiation, was calcification or brain necrosis observed during the first 14 weeks following irradiation.

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Accession: 005312406

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PMID: 3473065

DOI: 10.1007/bf00396379

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