We studied the influence of halothane and isoflurane on the electrical threshold for triggering spreading depression (SD) in rats. While the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist ketamine dramatically increased the triggering threshold (and blocked propagation), neither volatile agent had any dose-related effect. High doses of both agents slightly slowed SD propagation rate. These results indicate that volatile agents in typical anesthetic doses can be used in studies of SD in rats, and also suggest that these agents have little effect on NMDA receptor-mediated neurotransmission.
- Spreading depression
- Volatile anesthetic