Occurrence of oxidative stress during reperfusion of the human heart

Roberto Ferrari, Ottavio Alfieri, Salvatore Curello, Claudio Ceconi, Anna Cargnoni, Paolo Marzollo, Alessandro Pardini, Eugenio Caradonna, Odoardo Visioli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We have investigated the relation between occurrence of myocardial oxidative stress and functional recovery during postischemic reperfusion in 20 selected patients subjected to aortocoronary bypass grafting. Patients were selected for having normal percent ejection fraction and left ventricular end-diastolic pressure before the operation. Occurrence of oxidative stress was assessed by measuring the formation and release of oxidized glutathione (GSSG) in the coronary sinus immediately before aortic cross-clamp, 1, 5, 10, and 20 minutes after removal of aortic cross-clamp, and 10 and 20 minutes after the end of cardiopulmonary bypass. Reduced glutathione (GSH), lactate, and creatine phosphokinase release were also monitored with the same timing. Standard hemodynamic measurements were recorded by means of a triple-lumen thermodilution pulmonary artery catheter before sternotomy, 15 minutes after the end of cardiopulmonary bypass, and during the 24 hours after termination of cardiopulmonary bypass. Reperfusion in patients after a short period of ischemia (less than 30 minutes; group 1) resulted in a small and transient release in the coronary sinus of GSSG and GSH and in a progressive improvement of hemodynamic parameters reaching a stable state 4 hours after the operation. In patients with a period of ischemia longer than 30 minutes (group 2), reperfusion induced a marked and sustained release of lactate, GSH, and GSSG; the arteriocoronary sinus difference for GSSG was still negative after the end of cardiopulmonary bypass. The arteriocoronary sinus difference for creatine phosphokinase also remained negative for as long as 20 minutes after cardiopulmonary bypass, and the rate of functional recovery was significantly delayed, reaching the values of group 1 only 12 hours after the operation. In these patients there was a positive correlation (r=0.88, p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-211
Number of pages11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1990


  • Free radicals
  • Ischemia
  • Reperfusion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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