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Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research

On-line version ISSN 1414-431X


LI, Y. et al. Retinoic acid protects from experimental cerebral infarction by upregulating GAP-43 expression. Braz J Med Biol Res [online]. 2017, vol.50, n.4, e5561.  Epub Apr 03, 2017. ISSN 1414-431X.

The aim of this study was to investigate whether exogenous retinoic acid (RA) can upregulate the mRNA and protein expression of growth-associated protein 43 (GAP-43), thereby promoting brain functional recovery in a rat distal middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model of ischemia. A total of 216 male Sprague Dawley rats weighing 300–320 g were divided into 3 groups: sham-operated group, MCAO+vehicle group and MCAO+RA group. Focal cortical infarction was induced with a distal MCAO model. The expression of GAP-43 mRNA and protein in the ipsilateral perifocal region was assessed using qPCR and immunocytochemistry at 1, 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days after distal MCAO. In addition, an intraperitoneal injection of RA was given 12 h before MCAO and continued every day until the animal was sacrificed. Following ischemia, the expression of GAP-43 first increased considerably and then decreased. Administration of RA reduced infarction volume, promoted neurological functional recovery and upregulated expression of GAP-43. Administration of RA can ameliorate neuronal damage and promote nerve regeneration by upregulating the expression of GAP-43 in the perifocal region after distal MCAO.

Keywords : Focal cerebral infarction; Growth associate protein 43; Retinoic acid; Nerve regeneration.

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