Hypoxia pp 355-358 | Cite as

A Tribute to Niels Lassen

December 7th, 1926—April 30th, 1997
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 474)


Niels Lassen died in Copenhagen of pancreatic carcinoma at 71. He was the premier leader in the field of quantitation of cerebral blood flow (CBF). Immediately after finishing medical school, he and Ole Munck introduced the use of radioactive isotopes for CBF measurement. With David Ingvar, he was the first to use collimated radioactive extracranial counting after intracarotid injection of the radioactive isotope 85Krypton or 133Xenon dissolved in saline to localize regions of high or low cerebral flow. His mathematician wife Edda Sveinsdotter developed programming methods and much technical support. Functional brain mapping was pioneered by Lassen using, finally, a 254 detector system. With Bo Siesjo and David Ingvar, he founded the International Cerebral Blood Flow meetings and later the Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. From 1962 to 1996 he was chairman of the department of clinical physiology and nuclear medicine at Bispebjerg Hospital in Copenhagen. Niels’ command of English was better than mine, elegant, witty and creative. The terms “luxury perfusion” and “ischemic penumbra” are his.

Key words

cerebral blood flow 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Lassen, N. A. Increase of cerebral blood flow at high altitude: its possible relation to AMS. Int J Sports Med 13 Suppl 1: S47–8, 1992.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Lassen, N. A. Is central chemoreceptor sensitive to intracellular rather than extracellular pH? Clin Physiol 10: 311–9, 1990.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Lassen, N. A., L. Friberg, J. Kastrup, D. Rizzi, and J. J. Jensen. Effects of acetazolamide on cerebral blood flow and brain tissue oxygenation. Postgrad Med J 63: 185–7, 1987.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Lassen, N. A., and A. M. Harper. Letter: High-altitude cerebral oedema. Lancet 2: 1154, 1975PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Andersen, A. R., P. Tfelt-Hansen, and N. A. Lassen. The effect of ergotamine and dihydroergotamine on cerebral blood flow in man. Stroke 18: 120–3, 1987.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Friberg, L., J. Kastrup, D. Rizzi, J. B. Jensen, and N. A. Lassen. Cerebral blood flow and end-tidal PCO2 during prolonged acetazolamide treatment in humans. Am JPhysiol 258: H954–9, 1990.Google Scholar
  7. Harvey, T. C., M. E. Raichle, M. H. Winterborn, J. Jensen, N. A. Lassen, N. V. Richardson, and A. R. Bradwell. Effect of carbon dioxide in acute mountain sickness: a rediscovery. Lancet 2: 639–41, 1988.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Heuser, D., J. Astrup, N. A. Lassen, and B. E. Betz. Brain carbonic acid acidosis after acetazolamide. Acta Physiol Scand 93: 385–90, 1975.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Jensen, J. B., B. Sperling, J. W. Severinghaus, and N. A. Lassen. Augmented hypoxic cerebral vasodilation in men during 5 days at 3,810 m altitude. J Appl Physiol 80: 1214–8, 1996.Google Scholar
  10. Jensen, J. B., A. D. Wright, N. A. Lassen, T. C. Harvey, M. H. Winterborn, M. E. Raichle, and A. R. Bradwell. Cerebral blood flow in acute mountain sickness. J Appl Physiol 69: 430–3, 1990.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Krasney, J. A., J. B. Jensen, and N. A. Lassen. Cerebral blood flow does not adapt to sustained hypoxia. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 10: 759–64, 1990.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Lou, H. C., N. A. Lassen, and B. Friis-Hansen. Low cerebral blood flow in hypotensive perinatal distress. Acta Neurol Scand 56: 343–52, 1977.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Postiglione, A., T. Bobkiewicz, E. Vinholdt-Pedersen, N. A. Lassen, O. B. Paulson, and D. I. Barry. Cerebrovascular effects of angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition involve large artery dilatation in rats. Stroke 22: 1363–8, 1991.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Schroeder, T., S. Vorstrup, N. A. Lassen, and H. C. Engell. Noninvasive xenon-133 measurements of cerebral blood flow using stationary detectors compared with dynamic emission tomography. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 6: 739–46, 1986.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Sorensen, S. C., N. A. Lassen, J. W. Severinghaus, J. Coudert, and M. P. Zamora Cerebral glucose metabolism and cerebral blood flow in high-altitude residents. J Appl Physiol 37: 305–10,1974.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Vorstrup, S., B. Brun, and N. A. Lassen. Evaluation of the cerebral vasodilatory capacity by the acetazolamide test before EC-IC bypass surgery in patients with occlusion of the internal carotid artery. Stroke 17: 1291–8, 1986.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Vorstrup, S., H. C. Engell, H. Lindewald, and N. A. Lassen. Hemodynamically significant stenosis of the internal carotid artery treated with endarterectomy. Case report. J Neurosurg 60: 1070–5, 1984.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Vorstrup, S., K. E. Jensen, C. Thomsen, O. Henriksen, N. A. Lassen, and O. B. Paulson. Neuronal pH regulation: constant normal intracellular pH is maintained in brain during low extracellular pH induced by acetazolamide--31P NMR study. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 9: 417–21, 1989.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Vorstrup, S., O. B. Paulson, and N. A. Lassen. Cerebral blood flow in acute and chronic ischemic stroke using xenon- 133 inhalation tomography. Acta Neurol Scand 74: 439–51, 1986.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Wang, Q., O. B. Paulson, and N. A. Lassen. Effect of nitric oxide blockade by NG-nitro-Larginine on cerebral blood flow response to changes in carbon dioxide tension. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 12: 947–53, 1992.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Wang, Q., O. B. Paulson, and N. A. Lassen. Indomethacin abolishes cerebral blood flow increase in response to acetazolamide-induced extracellular acidosis: a mechanism for its effect on hypercapnia? J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 13: 724–7, 1993.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.AnesthesiologyUniversity of California San FranciscoUSA

Personalised recommendations