The morphological features of cerebral tissue in the isolated guinea-pig brain maintained in vitro by arterial perfusion are described. Light and electron microscopic anatysis of the thalamus, the somatosensory cortex and the limbic cortices (hippocampus, piriform and entorhinal cortices) was performed after different periods of incubation in vitro (1,7 and 12 h), in parallel with an electrophysiological study. The morphological analysis showed that neuronal elements retained their normal appearance at both cellular and subcellular level in the examined brain regions up to an incubation period of 12 h. Immunoreactivity for GABA was also preserved for up to 12 h of in vitro perfusion. Vasogenic edema and perivascular extracellular swelling appeared after 7 h, together with signs of progressive astrocytic deterioration. These findings show that normal electrophysiological recordings correlate with good anatomical preservation of the isolated guinea-pig brain preparation after prolonged times of arterial in vitro perfusion.
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