Maturation of the Blood-Brain and Blood-CSF Barriers

  • Dixon M. Woodbury
Part of the Advances in Behavioral Biology book series (ABBI, volume 8)


It is important to elucidate in a Symposium on the Effects of Drugs on the Developing Brain the routes and mechanisms by which drugs that act on the brain enter and leave this organ. Many factors determine the concentration of drugs in the brain and it is the purpose of this paper to describe what these factors are and what changes occur during maturation. Thus, the volume of distribution of a drug, its pKa, the properties of the cerebral capillary endothelial cells that constitute the “blood-brain barrier”, the rate of cerebrospinal fluid flow, and the properties of the systems that transport drugs across the choroid plexus are all important factors to be discussed. The developing animal is ideal for studying the “blood-brain barrier” because large changes take place in a short period of time. Thus, the brain of rats is mature by 21 days of age, although certain events (for example, myelination and glial growth) take place over a longer period of time. (For discussions of the ontegeny of the blood-brain barrier, see Davson, 1973 and Saunders and Bradbury, 1973).


Glial Cell Choroid Plexus Biochemical Development Carbonic Anhydrase Activity Arachnoid Villus 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1974

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dixon M. Woodbury
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PharmacologyUniversity of Utah College of MedicineSalt Lake CityUSA

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