An experimental model to evaluate the whole-brain neurovascular coupling during spontaneous cerebral activity

Zahiu D. (1), Calin A. (1), Acatrinei C. (1), Paslaru A.C. (1), Voinescu M. (1), Stancu M. (1), Stoian A. (1), Mirica S. (1), Gonzales A. (1), Zagrean A.M. (1), Zagrean L. (1) and Moldovan M. (1,2) 1) Division of Physiology and Fundamental Neuroscience, "Carol Davila" University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Bucharest, Romania; 2)Neuroscience and Pharmacology, Panum, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark

Published in: Abstract Book - Conference of the National Neuroscience Society, Editura Universitara "Carol Davila" ISSN 2344 – 3952

SNN 2013
17-19 Oct, 2013

A transient increase in cortical neuronal activity is followed by a complex process resulting in a transient increase in cerebral blood flow. This physiological process of neurovascular coupling, measured by its hemodynamic response function (HRF), is used to infer neuronal activity in modern vascular-based brain imaging techniques. Quantification of HRF during spontaneous brain activity remains, however, challenging. Neurovascular coupling is commonly assessed by averaging multiple neural and vascular responses triggered by visually or somatosensory stimuli. Here we tested whether HRF during spontaneous cerebral activity could be investigated by taking advantage of the whole-brain discontinuous EEG burst-suppression (BS) state during deep anesthesia. Experiments were carried out in adult male Wistar rats during BS induced by chloral hydrate overdose. The electrocorticographic (ECoG) and laser Doppler (LD) signals were simultaneously acquired from the left hemisphere. The rectified ECoG was convoluted with the HRF to obtain a synthetic LD signal. Two parameters of the HRF (peak response latency and response width) were then programmatically optimized to obtain a maximum correlation between the recorded and the synthetic LD signals within the 0.1-0.4 Hz band. We found that with increasing depth of anesthesia, the decrease in the bursting frequency, was associated with an increase in HRF peak latency without alterations in HRF width. Our study provides proof of concept that HRF could be estimated during a reversible anesthetic BS state. This should be accounted for in the design of clinical neurovascular coupling studies combining non-invasive methods.