Enriched environment delays the onset of hippocampal damage after global cerebral ischemia in rats

Andrey Belayev, Isabel Saul, Yitao Liu, Weizhao Zhao, Myron D. Ginsberg, Manuel A. Valdes, Raul Busto, Ludmila Belayev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

An enriched environment has been shown to improve cognitive, behavioral and histopathological outcome after focal cerebral ischemia and head trauma. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of an enriched environment on histopathology following global cerebral ischemia. Wistar rats (21 weeks of age) were placed in different environments [standard cages (SC) or enriched environment (EE) cages] for 2 months before and either 6 days or 2 months after ischemia. Rats underwent 10 min of global ischemia by bilateral carotid artery occlusions plus hypotension. Five groups (n=4-5 in each group) were studied: (1) rats kept in SC before and 2 months after ischemia; (2) rats kept in SC before ischemia but transferred to an EE for 2 months after ischemia; (3) rats kept in EE before and after ischemia for 2 months; (4) rats kept in SC before and 6 days after ischemia; (5) rats kept in EE before and 6 days after ischemia. At 7 days or 2 months after ischemia, brains were perfusion-fixed, and ischemic injury was assessed by counting numbers of normal neurons in the hippocampal CA1 sector. Physiological variables showed no inter-group differences. Rats housed in EE for 2 months before and for 6 days (but not 2 months) after global ischemia showed significantly better preservation of pyramidal neurons in the hippocampal CA1 area when compared to control animals (middle CA1, 20.5±5.4 vs. 2.8±0.6; lateral CA1, 31.5±7.2 vs. 2.6±0.6, respectively). The present data suggest that housing in EE for 2 months before and 6 days after ischemia can delay the onset of damage to hippocampal pyramidal neurons, which eventually occurs despite 2-month EE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-127
Number of pages7
JournalBrain Research
Volume964
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 21 2003

Keywords

  • Enriched environment
  • Global cerebral ischemia
  • Neuroprotection
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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