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Systematic and detailed analysis of behavioural tests in the rat middle cerebral artery occlusion model of stroke: tests for long-term assessment

Trueman, Rebecca C., Diaz, Claris, Farr, Tracy D., Harrison, David J., Fuller, Anna, Tokarczuk, Pawel F., Stewart, Andrew J., Paisey, Stephen J. ORCID: and Dunnett, Stephen B. ORCID: 2017. Systematic and detailed analysis of behavioural tests in the rat middle cerebral artery occlusion model of stroke: tests for long-term assessment. Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 37 (4) , pp. 1349-1361. 10.1177/0271678X16654921

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In order to test therapeutics, functional assessments are required. In pre-clinical stroke research, there is little consensus regarding the most appropriate behavioural tasks to assess deficits, especially when testing over extended times in milder models with short occlusion times and small lesion volumes. In this study, we comprehensively assessed 16 different behavioural tests, with the aim of identifying those that show robust, reliable and stable deficits for up to two months. These tasks are regularly used in stroke research, as well as being useful for examining striatal dysfunction in models of Huntington’s and Parkinson’s disease. Two cohorts of male Wistar rats underwent the intraluminal filament model of middle cerebral artery occlusion (30 min) and were imaged 24 h later. This resulted in primarily subcortical infarcts, with a small amount of cortical damage. Animals were tested, along with sham and naïve groups at 24 h, seven days, and one and two months. Following behavioural testing, brains were processed and striatal neuronal counts were performed alongside measurements of total brain and white matter atrophy. The staircase, adjusting steps, rotarod and apomorphine-induced rotations were the most reliable for assessing long-term deficits in the 30 min transient middle cerebral artery occlusion model of stroke.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 0271-678X
Funders: Medical Research Council
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 25 August 2016
Date of Acceptance: 26 April 2016
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2023 07:36

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