Behavioral outcome measures to improve experimental stroke research

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Abstract

Functional recovery after an experimental stroke can be assessed by multiple behavioral tests, however, there is no consensus about which test to use in long-term stroke recovery studies or whether the tests are affected by stroke surgery, post-operative care or behavioral compensation due to repeated testing. This review describes the tests most commonly used to assess motor and sensorimotor function, cognition and mood in stroke animals. Although it is difficult to predict the direction of future research, it may be possible to prevent false-positive results by selecting an appropriate task or a battery of tasks. It is also expected that the upcoming stroke recovery recommendations and the improved dialogue between academy, industry and healthcare professionals will further promote translational success.

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