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At present, rats are the most commonly used experimental animals in cerebral ischemia research. Rats have many advantages, such as inexpensive, good intraspecific homozygosity and similar cerebrovascular anatomical characteristics with human beings.


To explore the influence of aging to cerebral ischemia by observing the behavior changes in young and old rats with middle cerebral artery occlusion.


Young and old Sprague Dawley rats were randomly divided into four groups: young sham-operation group, old sham-operation group, young model group and old model group. Middle cerebral artery occlusion model was established by permanent ligation of the ipsilateral common carotid artery using the intraluminal suture technique.


The body mass index of the old sham-operation group was significantly lower than that of the young sham-operation group (P < 0.05), but higher than that of the old model group (P < 0.05). The body mass index of the old model group was lower than that of the young model group (P < 0.05). The modified neurological severity score of the old model group was significantly higher than that of the young model group on the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 7th days after operation (P < 0.05). The escape latency of the old model group was significantly longer than those of the other groups at the 3rd, 8th and 12th weeks after operation. The number of crossing platform location in the old model group was significantly less than those in the other groups (P < 0.05, respectively). These findings demonstrated that compared with the young rat cerebral ischemia model with the same ischemia state, the old rat cerebral ischemia model showed more severe ischemia damage, lower repair capacity, and the neural functional recovery, spatial learning and memory ability was obvious inferior to that of the young rat model. It indicates that aging is one of the important factors that influence the neural injury after cerebral ischemia.


Liu ZT, Qin YS, Liu J, Liu YX, Jiang T. Young rat model versus old rat model for cerebral ischemia. Zhongguo Zuzhi Gongcheng Yanjiu. 2012;16(11): 2003-2006. [http://www.crter.cn]

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