Sleep-related brain activation does not increase the permeability of the blood–brain barrier to glucose
Article (Published version)
© 2005 ISCBFM
MetadataShow full item record
We compared blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability to glucose between quiet wakefulness and rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep to assess whether changes in BBB permeability play a role in coupling glucose supply to the physiologic metabolic needs of the brain. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were prepared with electrodes for wake-sleep state scoring and with arterial and venous catheters. Using the single-pass, dual-label indicator method, unidirectional glucose extraction by the brain and cerebral blood flow (CBF) were simultaneously measured during states of quiet wakefulness ( n = 12) or REM sleep ( n = 7). The product of BBB surface area and permeability to glucose (PS product) was computed in each state. During REM sleep, CBF significantly exceeded that during quiet wakefulness in all regions but the cerebellum, whereas the difference in the PS product between quiet wakefulness and REM sleep was not statistically significant in any brain region. In the brain as a whole, CBF significantly inc...reased 29% from quiet wakefulness to REM sleep, while a nonsignificant 0.8% increase occurred in the PS product. During REM sleep, the increase in CBF indicates a higher rate of brain glucose consumption than in quiet wakefulness, given the tight flow-metabolism coupling in the brain. Therefore, these data show that modulation of BBB permeability to glucose is not a mechanism that provides ‘energy on demand’ during the physiologic brain activation characterising REM sleep.