Functional recovery in cytoprotected somatosensory cortex in a rat stroke model was studied using functional MRI (fMRI). Calcium antagonist treatment (isradipine) following permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion (pMCAO) reduced the infarct volume by 33 ± 9%. The somatosensory cortex representing the forepaws was spared from infarction; however, cerebral blood flow (CBF) was significantly reduced in this area 24 hr following pMCAO. Neural function was assessed at days 1, 2, 5, and 12 following pMCAO by fMRI using electrical stimulation of both forepaws. Vehicle-treated rats did not show fMRI responses in the infarcted somatosensory cortex throughout the study. Several of the isradipine-treated animals displayed functional recovery in the cytoprotected cortex at days 5 (3/5 rats) and 12 (5/10). Correlations with fMRI signals showed that normal T2 and ADC values in the respective brain areas are necessary, but not sufficient prerequisites for functionality. Recovery of neural function is associated with normalization of CBF in the cytoprotected brain area.
- Cerebral ischemia
- Functional magnetic resonance imaging
- Functional recovery
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging