Effects of anaesthetic agents on basal and histamine-stimulated acid secretion in the fistula rat

Salim M.A. Bastaki, Graham Waton, Andrew Garner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Anaesthetized rats or surgically modified preparations such as the Shay rat are widely used to study upper gastrointestinal function in the laboratory. Despite the existence of reports demonstrating that agents such as barbiturates can influence acid output, a systematic study of the effects of anaesthetics on gastric secretion has not been undertaken.Basal and histamine-stimulated acid output were measured in chronic fistula rats after administration of injectable and volatile anaesthetics frequently used in studies of gastric secretion in anaesthetized animals. With the exception of ether, for which recovery is very rapid, sedating rather than full anaesthetic doses were used.Chloralose (40mg/kg) had no significant effect on gastric secretion. Pentobarbitone (25 mg/kg) inhibited basal and histamine-stimulated acid output, but the effect was relatively short-lived and secretion returned to control levels after 2h. Urethane (750 mg/kg) markedly inhibited basal acid output and abolished the secretory response to histamine given 15 to 60 min later. The effects of urethane on acid secretion persisted for the entire 3h duration of experiments, during which time basal acid output declined to levels observed in fully anaesthetized rats given 1.5 g/kg. Full anaesthesia with ether for 60 min also caused profound inhibition of basal secretion and, like urethane, abolished the effect of histamine despite the fact that the animals recovered consciousness within 5 min.The differential activity of anaesthetics and profound antisecretory activity of ether and urethane should be taken into account when studying gastrointestinal function and mucosal ulceration in anaesthetized animals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1199-1202
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1995


  • Acid output
  • Chloralose
  • Ether
  • Fistula rat
  • Histamine
  • Pentobarbitone
  • Urethane

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of anaesthetic agents on basal and histamine-stimulated acid secretion in the fistula rat'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this