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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Temporal profile of apoptotic-like changes in neurons and astrocytes following controlled cortical impact injury in the rat.

Apoptotic cell death has been observed in both neurodegenerative diseases and acute neurological traumas such as ischemia, spinal cord injury, and traumatic brain injury (TBI). Recent studies employing different models of TBI have described morphological and biochemical changes characteristic of apoptosis following injury. However, no study has examined the temporal profile of apoptosis following controlled cortical impact (CCI) injury in the rat. In addition, the relative frequency of apoptotic profiles in different cell types (neurons versus glia) following CCI has yet to be investigated. In the present experiments, injured cortex was subjected to DNA electrophoresis, and serial sections from the contusion area were stained with hematoxylin and eosin or Hoechst 33258 or double-labeled with TUNEL and neuronal or glial markers. The results of the present study indicate that CCI produces a substantial amount of DNA damage associated with both apoptotic-like and necrotic-like cell death phenotypes primarily at the site of cortical impact and focal contusion. DNA damage, as measured by TUNEL and DNA electrophoresis, was most apparent 1 day following injury and absent by 14 days post-TBI. However, quantitative analysis showed that the majority of TUNEL-positive cells failed to exhibit apoptotic-like morphology and were probably undergoing necrosis. In addition, apoptotic-like morphology was predominantly observed in neurons compared to astrocytes. The present study provides further evidence that apoptosis is involved in the pathology of TBI and could contribute to some of the ensuing cell death following injury.[1]


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