2014 Volume 126 Issue 4 Pages 351-358
We investigated the anesthetic effects of propofol on the electrocardiogram (ECG) in mice. We also compared the effects of isoflurane (2%) inhalation anesthesia, intraperitoneal propofol (50 or 100 mg/kg), and pentobarbital (50 mg/kg) on ECG in mice. Isoflurane inhalation and pentobarbital anesthesia were both associated with an acceptable heart rate (HR) range (ca. 450 – 500 bpm). In contrast, high-dose propofol anesthesia significantly decreased the HR. Importantly, propofol anesthesia led to significantly reduced responses to propranolol, a β-blocker, suggesting that it affects sympathetic tonus and is not suitable for the evaluation of cardiovascular or sympathetic function. Propofol also reduced the response to atropine, indicative of suppression of mouse parasympathetic nerve activity. Our data suggest that propofol anesthesia should not be the first choice for cardiovascular analysis in mice.