ISSN 1214-0287 (on-line)
ISSN 1214-021X (printed)

Volume 7 (2009), No 3, p 133-136

Influence of different ways of euthanasia on the activity of cholinesterases in the rat

Ladislav Novotny, Jan Misik, Jana Karasova, Kamil Kuca, Jiri Bajgar

Address: Ladislav Novotny, Center of Advanced Studies, Faculty of Military Health Sciences; University of Defense, Trebesska 1575, 500 01 Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic

Received 27th April 2009.
Revised 3rd June 2009.
Published online 8th July 2009.

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We studied the influence of four methods of euthanasia (decapitation, exsanguination via cardiocentesis following ether anaesthesia, Nembutal anaesthesia, or immersion in a CO2 atmosphere) on the activity of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) in the brain and in the blood of mature female rats. A significant decrease was observed in the activity of AChE in the whole blood in the group treated with Nembutal. There were no significant changes in the activity of BChE with any method of euthanasia. Euthanasia in a CO2 atmosphere was the best technique with respect to the results indicating lack of affect on the activity of AChE and BChE in the periphery and the brain, as well as from the point of view of the welfare of the animals.

animal welfare; carbon dioxide; Ellman's method; ether; Nembutal; pentobarbital; anesthesia

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