Vinuta Rau(1), Michael S. Fanselow(2) and Edmond I Eger II(1)
1. University of California, San Francisco, California, USA
2. University of California, Los Angeles, California, USA
Neurobiology of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers, 2010, 376 pages.
The experience of surgery can produce both physical and psychological stress. Awareness during anesthesia is a major concern of patients preoperatively. While its occurrence is relatively rare, awareness increases the likelihood of negative post-surgical outcomes, including Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). By using an animal model of PTSD called stress-enhanced fear learning (SEFL), we have studied how inhaled anesthetics suppress PTSD-like symptomotology. Sufficient concentrations of the inhaled anesthetics isoflurane and nitrous oxide suppress PTSD-like symptomotology, as measured by SEFL. However, their mechanism of action is unclear. We have examined the role of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDA-R) previously, and we examine the role of γ-aminobutyric acid type A receptors (GABAA-R) in this chapter. The results collectively show that neither receptor system alone suppresses SEFL, suggesting that multiple receptor systems underlie the ability of inhaled anesthetics to suppress SEFL.