Minocycline as a neuroprotectant in an aged female rat stroke model
Pope, Liza C.
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An ischemic stroke occurs when blood flow to an artery in the brain is blocked, and these account for 87% of the approximately 795,000 people that experience a stroke in the United States each year . Because women accounted for 60.1% of stroke mortality in 2008 , we examined a middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model using retired breeder female Sprague Dawley rats to simulate the age range when stroke prevalence begins to increase. We created both 120 minute transiently occluded and permanently occluded models in order to evaluate groups that most closely related to the clinical setting, where many patients do not receive any type of revascularization treatment, and found that seven days was the optimal end point for use as a pharmaceutical treatment model. These specifications provided a reasonably sized infarct to be visible in control groups using triphenyltetrazolium chloride (TTC) staining, neurologic scoring to be charted over time, and allowed time for a drug regimen to show an effect. Once a usable model was developed, we were able to utilize it to evaluate neuroprotective qualities of the antibiotic, minocycline, in both transiently and permanently occluded groups. We found that those in the treatment groups experienced a greater improvement in neurologic scores and a larger decrease in infarct size after daily treatment for seven days. This improvement was more prominent in the transiently occluded treatment group than in the permanently occluded group, suggesting that neuroprotectants may present a greater benefit to patients when a revascularization treatment is also provided.