Document Detail

Role of somatostatin and apoptosis in breathing control in sudden perinatal and infant unexplained death.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  15584216     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVES: To obtain basic information about the expression of somatostatin in the human central nervous system and, in particular, to evaluate its possible involvement in unexplained perinatal and in sudden infant death syndrome. MATERIAL: Sixty-seven brainstems from subjects aged from 30 gestational weeks to 12 postnatal months, dying of both known and unknown causes, were selected for this study. The unexplained deaths included 17 sudden intrauterine deaths, 5 sudden neonatal deaths and 28 sudden infant deaths. METHOD: All brainstems were fixed in 10% phosphate-buffered formalin, processed and embedded in paraffin, according to our protocol available on the web site: The distribution of the somatostatin in the brainstem was studied by immunohistochemistry on serial sections. RESULTS: We observed an intense somatostatin positivity in many brainstem nuclei prevalently involved in the respiratory activity (parabrachial/Kölliker-Fuse complex, locus coeruleus, hypoglossus nucleus, dorsal vagus motor nucleus, tractus solitarii nucleus, ambiguus nucleus, reticular formation) in stillbirths. In 10 fetuses with unexplained death the neurons of the hypoglossus nucleus were somatostatin-negative. In the postnatal deaths, we observed immunopositivity in the ventrolateral and ventral subnuclei of the tractus solitarii nucleus. Besides, in 15 sudden infant death victims and in 1 control case, somatostatin-positive neurons were also present in the hypoglossus nucleus. In 10 of these 15 cases, a high apoptotic index was also reported. CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that abnormalities in the distribution of SS in the hypoglossus nucleus before and after birth may contribute to the induction of both fatal breathing in prenatal life and abnormal ventilatory control after birth leading to irreversible apnea.
A M Lavezzi; G Ottaviani; L Matturri
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Clinical neuropathology     Volume:  23     ISSN:  0722-5091     ISO Abbreviation:  Clin. Neuropathol.     Publication Date:    2004 Nov-Dec
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2004-12-08     Completed Date:  2005-01-28     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8214420     Medline TA:  Clin Neuropathol     Country:  Germany    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  304-10     Citation Subset:  IM    
Lino Rossi Research Center for the Study and Prevention of Unexpected Perinatal Death and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, Institute of Pathology, University of Milan, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Apoptosis / physiology*
In Situ Nick-End Labeling
Infant, Newborn
Pregnancy Outcome
Respiratory Center / chemistry,  metabolism*,  pathology
Somatostatin / metabolism*
Sudden Infant Death / etiology*
Reg. No./Substance:

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