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Current Pharmaceutical Design


ISSN (Print): 1381-6128
ISSN (Online): 1873-4286

A Valuable Animal Model of Spinal Cord Injury to Study Motor Dysfunctions, Comorbid Conditions, and Aging Associated Diseases

Author(s): Pascal Rouleau and Pierre A. Guertin

Volume 19, Issue 24, 2013

Page: [4437 - 4447] Pages: 11

DOI: 10.2174/1381612811319240010

Price: $65


Most animal models of contused, compressed or transected spinal cord injury (SCI) require a laminectomy to be performed. However, despite advantages and disadvantages associated with each of these models, the laminectomy itself is generally associated with significant problems including longer surgery and anaesthesia (related post-operative complications), neuropathic pain, spinal instabilities, deformities, lordosis, and biomechanical problems, etc. This review provides an overview of findings obtained mainly from our laboratory that are associated with the development and characterization of a novel murine model of spinal cord transection that does not require a laminectomy. A number of studies successfully conducted with this model provided strong evidence that it constitutes a simple, reliable and reproducible transection model of complete paraplegia which is particularly useful for studies on large cohorts of wild-type or mutant animals - e.g., drug screening studies in vivo or studies aimed at characterizing neuronal and non-neuronal adaptive changes post-trauma. It is highly suitable also for studies aimed at identifying and developing new pharmacological treatments against aging associated comorbid problems and specific SCI-related dysfunctions (e.g., stereotyped motor behaviours such as locomotion, sexual response, defecation and micturition) largely related with ‘command centers’ located in lumbosacral areas of the spinal cord.

Keywords: Model of spinal cord injury, murine model, micturition, central pattern generator, SpinalonTM, loss of voluntary ambulation, locomotion.

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