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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 9718615, 6 pages
Research Article

The Role of Oxidative Stress in Decreased Acetylcholinesterase Activity at the Neuromuscular Junction of the Diaphragm during Sepsis

1Department of Anesthesiology, Shanghai General Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200080, China
2Department of Anesthesiology, The Ninth People’s Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200011, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Shi-tong Li

Received 13 July 2017; Accepted 17 October 2017; Published 5 November 2017

Academic Editor: Paola Venditti

Copyright © 2017 Hua Liu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Our recent study demonstrated that acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) of the diaphragm decreased during sepsis. However, the mechanisms were not clearly identified. In this study, we aimed to investigate whether the decreased AChE activity was related to oxidative stress by observing AChE activity in different grades of sepsis induced by caecal ligation and puncture (CLP). At 24 h after surgery, an assay of thiobarbituric acid reactive species (TBARS) and protein carbonyls, as well as the myeloperoxidase (MPO), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase (CAT) activity, was conducted. AChE activity was measured by biochemical and histological detection. AChE and CAT activity in the diaphragm decreased, while the contents of TBARS and protein carbonyls, the activity of MPO and SOD, and the SOD/CAT ratios increased. The above changes were much more significant in the mid-grade septic group than in the low-grade septic group. The colour of the AChE activity staining at the NMJ gradually lightened from the sham surgery group to the mid-grade septic group. AChE activity was significantly negatively correlated with the levels of TBARS and protein carbonyls. We consider that oxidative stress might be responsible for decreased AChE activity in the diaphragms of rats induced with sepsis.