Concentrations of Manganese-containing superoxide dismutase (Mn-SOD) were measured perioperatively by enzyme immunoassay in serial samples of arterial and coronary sinus blood and urine taken from 18 patients undergoing mitral valve surgery. The mean Mn-SOD concentration in the arterial blood samples was 66.2 (SD 16.1ng/ml) at induction of anesthesia, increased gradually after reperfusion and peaked on the 2nd post-operative day [150 (SD 58.3)ng/ml]. The mean concentration of Mn-SOD in the coronary sinus blood samples was significantly higher than in the arterial samples only at the 6th hour after reperfusion [97 (SD 21.8) ng/ml vs 90.3 (SD 20.9) ng/ml, p<0.05]. Although concentrations of Mn-SOD in blood did not increase in 8 patients who underwent midline sternotomy for a mediastinal tumor, they increased dramatically in 3 patients who sustained a perioperative myocardial infarction. During open heart surgery the peak values of plasma Mn-SOD concentrations were correlated to that of plasma creatine kinase-MB concentrations (r=0.5532, n=18, p<05) and cardiac ischemic period (r=0.5186, n=18, p<05). Although the meaning of an increase in plasma Mn-SOD concentrations during open heart surgery is not clarified, it may be released from the heart and anywhere also in the body damaged during cardiopulmonary bypass.
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