Post-ischaemic treatment with the cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor nimesulide reduces blood-brain barrier disruption and leukocyte infiltration following transient focal cerebral ischaemia in rats

Candelario-Jalil, E.; González-Falcón, A.; García-Cabrera, M.; León, O.S.; Fiebich, B.L.

Journal of Neurochemistry 100(4): 1108-1120

2007


ISSN/ISBN: 0022-3042
PMID: 17176264
DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2006.04280.x
Accession: 013004147

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Abstract
Several studies suggest that cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 plays a pivotal role in the progression of ischaemic brain damage. In the present study, we investigated the effects of selective inhibition of COX-2 with nimesulide (12 mg/kg) and selective inhibition of COX-1 with valeryl salicylate (VAS, 12-120 mg/kg) on prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)) levels, myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity, Evans blue (EB) extravasation and infarct volume in a standardized model of transient focal cerebral ischaemia in the rat. Post-ischaemic treatment with nimesulide markedly reduced the increase in PGE(2) levels in the ischaemic cerebral cortex 24 h after stroke and diminished infarct size by 48% with respect to vehicle-treated animals after 3 days of reperfusion. Furthermore, nimesulide significantly attenuated the blood-brain barrier (BBB) damage and leukocyte infiltration (as measured by EB leakage and MPO activity, respectively) seen at 48 h after the initial ischaemic episode. These studies provide the first experimental evidence that COX-2 inhibition with nimesulide is able to limit BBB disruption and leukocyte infiltration following transient focal cerebral ischaemia. Neuroprotection afforded by nimesulide is observed even when the treatment is delayed until 6 h after the onset of ischaemia, confirming a wide therapeutic window of COX-2 inhibitors in experimental stroke. On the contrary, selective inhibition of COX-1 with VAS had no significant effect on the evaluated parameters. These data suggest that COX-2 activity, but not COX-1 activity, contributes to the progression of focal ischaemic brain injury, and that the beneficial effects observed with non-selective COX inhibitors are probably associated to COX-2 rather than to COX-1 inhibition.

Post-ischaemic treatment with the cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor nimesulide reduces blood-brain barrier disruption and leukocyte infiltration following transient focal cerebral ischaemia in rats