Chronic hypoxia induces selective maldevelopment of peripheral myelin in rat

Timothy J. Benstead, Peter James Dyck, Phillip Low

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


To determine the morphologic effect of chronic hypoxia on peripheral nerve development, four-week-old rats were placed in a 10% O2 environment for ten weeks and compared with controls. Light microscopic morphometric analysis of hind limb nerves of hypoxic as compared to control nerves showed at statistically significant levels, a) smaller total fascicular areas, b) smaller median diameters, c) fiber spectra with peaks at smaller diameters, d) fewer large myelinated fibers per nerve, e) larger fiber density, f) smaller myelin areas. On average myelin areas, relative to axon size, were smaller in oxygen-deprived than in control rats. Also myelin spiral length and the number of myelin lamellae relative to axon area were smaller. These findings suggest that hypoxia retards myelinated fiber diameter and especially myelin development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)599-608
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1988


  • Diabetes
  • Hypoxia
  • Maldevelopment
  • Myelin
  • Peripheral nerve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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