A comparison of tumor and normal tissue microvascular hematocrits and red cell fluxes in a rat window chamber model

David M. Brizel, Bruce Klitzman, J. Michael Cook, Jeri Edwards, Gary Rosner, Mark W. Dewhirst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


This laboratory has previously used a window chamber model to measure red blood cell velocity in mammary tumors and normal granulation tissues of the F-344 rat. Because red cell flux and hematocrit more accurately reflect the oxygen carrying potential of blood, we used this model to measure these parameters. Red blood cells were labeled with fluorescein isothiocyanate, and 0.2 ml. packed cells were injected intravenously into rats bearing an 8 to 10 day old R-3230 mammary carcinoma. β-phycoerythrin (0.15 mg.) was also injected and served as a plasma dye to outline the blood vessels. A sample of peripheral blood was then taken and analyzed by flow cytometry to determine the labeled fraction of red blood cells. Flowing tumor and normal tissue vessels were recorded onto a VCR, and these video images were used to determine vascular length and diameter, RBC flux and velocity, and hematocrit. Median vessel diameter and loge (red blood cell flux) were significantly greater in tumors than in normal tissues (p = 0.007 and p < 0.025, respectively). After controlling for these variables, the median tumor hematocrit of 19% was not significantly greater than the median normal tissue hematocrit of 15%. This technique provides a nontoxic and reproducible method that is now being used to assist in the in vivo definition of tumor oxygenation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-276
Number of pages8
JournalInternational journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Flux
  • Hematocrit
  • Tumor microvasculature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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