Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 19738500
Neuroreport 2009 Oct;20(16):1419-23
Learning and memory are cognitive functions commonly impaired after surgery, especially in elderly patients. Our aim was to evaluate the effect of sevoflurane anaesthesia on episodic-like memory in young and aged wild-type mice and mice with altered nicotinic cholinergic neurotransmission (beta2KO). Mice learned objects before randomization to control, anaesthesia or sham groups. Anaesthesia was maintained at 2.6% sevoflurane for 2 h, starting immediately after training. Object memory testing was performed after 24 h, when one familiar object was replaced by a nonfamiliar object. While nonanaesthetized mice showed memory retention of the familiar object, anaesthetized wild-type and beta2KO mice showed impaired memory. Sevoflurane anaesthesia thus causes memory impairment in mice regardless of beta2 receptor-mediated nicotinic cholinergic neurotransmission.