Enduring Learning Deficits and Cerebral Synaptic Malformation from Exposure to 10 Parts of Halothane per Million

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Science  16 Aug 1974:
Vol. 185, Issue 4151, pp. 625-627
DOI: 10.1126/science.185.4151.625


Chronic exposure of rats to 10 parts of halothane per million during early life produced later deficits in learning a shock-motivated light-dark discrimination and a food-motivated maze pattern, correlated with enduring synaptic nembrane malformation in cerebral cortex. Adult exposure had no effect. Halothane may provide a useful analytical tool for study of brain. The behavioral-ultrastructural techniques also suggest a standard for assessing the safety of trace toxicants with central nervous system effects.