Biologia, Bratislava 54/Suppl. 6: 87-92, 1999.

ISSN 0006-3088 (Biologia). ISSN 1335-6399 (Biologia. Section Cellular and Molecular Biology).


Full paper

The relationship between neurological impairment and axonal transport of cholinergic enzymes after spinal cord ischemia in rabbit.


Zelmira Malatova

Institute of Neurobiology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Soltesovej 6, SK-04001 Kosice, Slovakia; tel.: ++421 95 765069, fax: ++421 95 765074, e-mail:

Received: February 18, 1999 / Accepted: October 5, 1999



The fast axonal transport of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and the slow transport of choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) were measured by “the stop-flow/nerve ligature” technique in the sciatic nerve of rabbits 24 h and 96 h after ischemia, performed by the occlusion of the abdominal aorta, which lasted 20 min. The results were correlated with those obtained from the sham-operated animals. Since different neurological impairments were observed after 20 min ischemia, experimental animals were divided in two groups according to the grade of neurological score. The first group involved animals with a slight or barely detectable deficit of motoric function (Grade 1). In this group, representing 60% of rabbits, the accumulation of ChAT was not altered and the accumulation of AChE above and below the ligature of the sciatic nerve was unchanged 24 h after ischemia; 96 h after ischemia, it was significantly increased. The second group involved paretic animals with a neurological score of Grade 2. In this group, the accumulation of AChE was markedly reduced after both the test periods but the ChAT accumulation was only reduced 96 h after ischemia. The results suggest that changes of fast axonal transport correspond with neurological impairment. Irreversible damage following spinal cord ischemia is associated with the axonal transport inhibition, while no changes or even an increase of fast AChE transport was found after slight, reversible injury. Increased axonal transport is probably involved in a process of neuron regeneration.


Key words: axonal transport, ischemia, acetylcholinesterase, choline acetyltransferase.