The effect of a short-term oral administration of potassium cyanide (KCN) (200 ppm in diet) with or without sodium nitrite (NaNO2) pretreatment on rat brain microsomal Ca ATPase was investigated. The specific activity value of the enzyme significantly decreased (p<0.05) by 50% compared with control and by 63% for KCN-treated rats compared with KCN-treated rats pretreated with NaNO2. There was no significant difference at the h=0.05 level between the values obtained for the control and KCN-treated rats pretreated with NaNO2. These results show both that feeding lowers brain microsomal Ca2+-ATPase activity and that NaNO2 has a protective role (antidote function) in that respect.

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