Long-Term Neuroprotective Effect of Postischemic Hypothermia in a Neonatal Rat Model of Severe Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy: A Comparative Study on the Duration and Depth of Hypothermia
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It is not known whether deeper or longer hypothermia (HT) can achieve better neuroprotection against hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) in neonates. To compare the neuroprotective effects of different durations and temperatures of postischemic HT in neonatal rats with severe HIE, 7-d-old rats were subjected to the Rice-Vannucci model for 150 min hypoxia. Only the rats with identified brain lesions in diffusion-weighted MRI were assigned to normothermia (NT, 36° C/48 h) or four HT (HT-30° C/48 h; HT-30° C/24 h; HT-33° C/48 h; and HT-33° C/24 h) groups. H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy (H-MRS) and T2-weighted MRI were obtained serially, and functional studies were performed. HT groups showed significantly greater residual hemispheric volume and better rotarod and cylinder tests than did the NT group at 5 wk postischemia. HT groups also showed lower lactate-plus-lipid level in H-MRS than did the NT group at 7 d postischemia. All of these outcome variables, however, did not differ among the 4 HT subgroups, despite a trend toward greater residual brain volume in the 48-h HT versus 24-h HT subgroups. In conclusion, neither reducing the target temperature from 33 to 30° C nor prolonging the duration from 24 to 48 h produced further improvements in neurologic outcomes in neonatal rat with HIE.
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