Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a severe condition leading to enduring motor deficits. When lesions are incomplete, promoting spinal cord plasticity might be a useful strategy to elicit functional recovery. Here we investigated whether long-term fluoxetine administration in the drinking water, a treatment recently demonstrated to optimize brain plasticity in several pathological conditions, promotes motor recovery in rats that received a C4 dorsal funiculus crush. We show that fluoxetine administration markedly improved motor functions compared to controls in several behavioral paradigms. The improved functional effects correlated positively with significant sprouting of intact corticospinal fibers and a modulation of the excitation/inhibition balance. Our results suggest a potential application of fluoxetine treatment as a non invasive therapeutic strategy for SCI-associated neuropathologies.

Fluoxetine treatment promotes functional recovery in a rat model of cervical spinal cord injury

Scali, Manuela;Begenisic, Tatjana;Mainardi, Marco;Sale, Alessandro;Maffei, Lamberto
2013

Abstract

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a severe condition leading to enduring motor deficits. When lesions are incomplete, promoting spinal cord plasticity might be a useful strategy to elicit functional recovery. Here we investigated whether long-term fluoxetine administration in the drinking water, a treatment recently demonstrated to optimize brain plasticity in several pathological conditions, promotes motor recovery in rats that received a C4 dorsal funiculus crush. We show that fluoxetine administration markedly improved motor functions compared to controls in several behavioral paradigms. The improved functional effects correlated positively with significant sprouting of intact corticospinal fibers and a modulation of the excitation/inhibition balance. Our results suggest a potential application of fluoxetine treatment as a non invasive therapeutic strategy for SCI-associated neuropathologies.
Animals; Disease Models, Animal; Fluoxetine; Gait; Male; Motor Activity; Motor Cortex; Neuronal Plasticity; Psychomotor Performance; Rats; Recovery of Function; Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors; Spinal Cord; Spinal Cord Injuries; Time Factors
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11384/68517
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