Effects of Good Limb Training on Motor Recovery Following Stroke in C57BL/6 Mice

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CONFERENCE: John Wesley Powell Student Research Conference

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Cheffer, Kimberly; Kerr, Faculty Advisor, Abigail
conference paper description
Upper limb impairment is a common and chronic consequence of stroke that may lead to overreliance on the good limb (GL). Although functionally adaptive, this compensatory strategy may limit recovery of the bad limb (BL). Previous research has established that GL training in mice impairs recovery of the BL following stroke in the short term. This study extends these findings by determining that GL use following stroke prevents functional recovery in the long term. Mice underwent pre-operative training on the Pasta Matrix Reaching Task. Unilateral stroke was then induced through intracortical infusions of endothelin-1. Post-operative training of the GL (or control procedures) occurred for two weeks after stroke. Following post-operative training, all mice received rehabilitative training of the BL for 28 days. Throughout rehabilitative training, control mice exhibited functional recovery while impairment persisted in GL mice. These findings suggest permanent damage to neural activity following post-stroke behavioral compensation.