Anesthesia-related Reagents / Equipment

In animal experiments, anesthesia is important not only to reduce animal suffering, but also to prevent animals from moving and ensure that necessary procedures for the experiment are accurately performed.

In mice and rats, general anesthesia is the most common method, and is divided into inhalation and injectable anesthesia depending on the method of administration. Inhalation anesthesia is simple to administer, but the period of deep anesthesia is short, and supplemental or additional anesthesia may be required in some cases. On the other hand, injectable anesthesia has the advantage of a long period of deep anesthesia, but the dose must be adjusted in consideration of the animal species, body weight, and age , because an incorrect dose may cause death of the animal.1)

FUJIFILM Wako offers isoflurane and sevoflurane as inhalation anesthetics used for general anesthesia in laboratory animals. Isoflurane and sevoflurane have the advantages of fast onset of anesthesia and fast awakening. They also undergo little metabolism in the body and are almost entirely excreted in the breath, causing no toxicity to the liver or other organs.

Although the mechanism of general anesthesia by inhalation anesthetics has not been fully understood,2) Han-Ying Wang et al. reported that isoflurane might cause anesthetic effects by inhibiting calcium channels and neurotransmitter release at presynaptic terminals, selectively blocking high-frequency signals involved in cognition, memory, motor control and consciousness, while preserving low-frequency signals necessary for sustaining life.3)


  1. "Mouse/rat experiment notebook" ed. by Nakagama, H. et al., Yodosha, Japan, (2009).
  2. Japanese Society of Anesthesiologists: (Japanese)
  3. Wang, H. Y. et al.: J. Neurosci., 40(21), 4103(2020).
    Frequency-dependent block of excitatory neurotransmission by isoflurane via dual presynaptic mechanisms

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