1. Academic Validation
  2. Lithium chloride ameliorates cognition dysfunction induced by sevoflurane anesthesia in rats

Lithium chloride ameliorates cognition dysfunction induced by sevoflurane anesthesia in rats

  • FEBS Open Bio. 2020 Feb;10(2):251-258. doi: 10.1002/2211-5463.12779.
Yilong Wang 1 2 3 Xiaohu An 1 2 3 Xiaoqing Zhang 4 Jianhui Liu 4 Jianwei Wang 1 2 3 Zeyong Yang 1 2 3


  • 1 Department of Anesthesiology, International Peace Maternity and Child Health Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, China.
  • 2 Shanghai Key Laboratory of Embryo Original Diseases, China.
  • 3 Shanghai Municipal Key Clinical Specialty, China.
  • 4 Department of Anesthesiology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji University, Shanghai, China.

Postoperative cognitive dysfunction is a common complication in elderly patients after surgeries involving anesthesia, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Lithium is a conventional treatment for bipolar disorder, which exerts a neuroprotective role in various diseases by inhibiting glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) in the brain and spinal cord. However, it is not known whether lithium chloride (LiCl) can protect against cognitive dysfunction induced by sevoflurane (SEV) anesthesia. Here, we examined the effects of LiCl on SEV-induced cognitive dysfunction in rats and on SEV-induced neuron Apoptosis. We report that anesthesia with SEV significantly impaired memory performance, induced oxidative stress and hippocampal neuron Apoptosis, and stimulated GSK-3β activity. Treatment with LiCl ameliorated SEV-induced cognitive disorder in rats by inhibiting the GSK-3β/β-catenin signaling pathway. In addition, LiCl reduced hippocampal neuron Apoptosis and oxidative stress induced by SEV anesthesia. These results suggest that LiCl may have potential for development into a therapeutic agent for treatment of SEV anesthesia-induced cognitive dysfunction.


anesthesia; apoptosis; cognitive deficits; glycogen synthase kinase-3β; lithium chloride; sevoflurane.