Left ventricular remodeling after experimental myocardial cryoinjury in rats

University of Milan, Milano, Lombardy, Italy
Journal of Surgical Research (Impact Factor: 2.12). 02/2004; 116(1):91-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.jss.2003.08.238
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ABSTRACT The standard coronary ligation, the most studied model of experimental myocardial infarction in rats, is limited by high mortality and produces unpredictable areas of necrosis. To standardize the location and size of the infarct and to elucidate the mechanisms of myocardial remodeling and its progression to heart failure, we studied the functional, structural, and ultrastructural changes of myocardial infarction produced by experimental myocardial cryoinjury. The cryoinjury was successful in 24 (80%) of 30 male adult CD rats. A subepicardial infarct was documented on echocardiograms, with an average size of about 21%. Macroscopic examination reflected closely the stamp of the instrument used, without transition zones to viable myocardium. Histological examination, during the acute setting, revealed an extensive area of coagulation necrosis and hemorrhage in the subepicardium. An inflammatory infiltrate was evident since the 7th hour, whereas the reparative phase started within the first week, with proliferation of fibroblasts, endothelial cells, and myocytes. From the 7th day, deposition of collagen fibers was reported with a reparative scar completed at the 30th day. Ultrastructural study revealed vascular capillary damage and irreversible alterations of the myocytes in the acute setting and confirmed the histological findings of the later phases. The damage was associated with a progressive left ventricular (LV) remodeling, including thinning of the infarcted area, hypertrophy of the noninfarcted myocardium, and significant LV dilation. This process started from the 60th day and progressed over the subsequent 120 days period; at 180 days, a significant increase in LV filling pressure, indicative of heart failure, was found. In conclusion, myocardial cryodamage, although different in respect to ischemic damage, causes a standardized injury reproducing the cellular patterns of coagulation necrosis, early microvascular reperfusion, hemorrhage, inflammation, reparation, and scarring observed in myocardial infarction with a late evolution toward heart failure. This model is therefore suitable to study myocardial repair after injury.

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    • "Indeed, it has been proven that this method is a valuable alternative to coronary occlusion-based methods when small animals were used such as mice [18] and [19], rats [20] and [21] and rabbits [22] and [23] because of the size and deeper location of their major coronary arteries. In larger animals, cryoinjury eliminates influence of variable extent of innate collateral coronary branches (e.g., in dogs) [6] which is a major determinant of ischemia and scar size in the occlusion models [7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The selective homing of peripherally injected marrow MNCs (MMNCs) has recently been demonstrated in a model of cryodamaged heart. However, the mechanism underlying this phenomenon is still unknown. In the hypothesis that this process is related to the necrotic area extension, the infarcted area was correlated with the number of homed MMNCs in a model of experimental cryodamaged heart. A total of 12 donor and 12 recipient inbred isogenic adult (4 weeks old) Fisher rats were used to mimic autologous transplantation. Myocardial damage was obtained in recipient rats by cryoinjury. MMNCs were purified, labeled with PKH26 (a red fluorescent cell dye), and infused 7 days after the injury through the femoral vein of recipient rats. One week after peripheral administration, the number of homed MMNCs was assessed and the infarct size was correlated with the number of cells present in the target. Labeled cells were found only in the injured myocardium of the treated animals (n = 6), where a mean of 12 +/- 3 PKH26+ cells per section examined were found; a significant correlation was found between the infarct size and the estimated number of cells (p = 0.008) These data indicate that the homing of MMNCs is related to the extent of the myocardial injury, suggesting that cellular therapy for regeneration of damaged myocardium should be individualized by taking into consideration the extension of the area to repair.
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