Hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) preconditioning (PC) has been suggested as a feasible method to provide neuroprotection from postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). However, whether HBO-PC can ameliorate cognitive deficits induced by isoflurane, and the possible mechanism by which it may exert its effect, has not yet been clarified. In the present study, middle-aged mice were exposed to isoflurane anesthesia (1.5 minimal alveolar concentration [MAC]) for 2 h to establish a POCD model. After HBO preconditioning, cognitive function and expression of hippocampal sirtuin 1 (Sirt1), nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) and heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1) were evaluated 24 h following isoflurane treatment, in the presence or absence of Sirt1 knockdown by short hairpin RNA (shRNA). HBO preconditioning increased the expression of Sirt1, Nrf2, and HO-1 and ameliorated memory dysfunction. Meanwhile, Sirt1 knockdown inhibited the expression of Nrf2 and HO-1 and attenuated the HBO preconditioning-associated memory improvement. Our results suggest that the application of HBO preconditioning is a useful treatment for POCD, and that Sirt1 may be a potential molecular target for POCD therapy.

Hong-Qiang, Mang-Qiao, Fen, Shan-Shan, Hui-Juan, Wu-Gang, Wen-Jun, Zheng-Wu (2018). Sirt1 mediates improvement of isoflurane-induced memory impairment following hyperbaric oxygen preconditioning in middle-aged mice. Physiology & behavior, 2018 Oct;195():1-8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30040951