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Dev Neurosci. 2007;29(4-5):321-30.

Erythropoietin enhances long-term neuroprotection and neurogenesis in neonatal stroke.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Francisco, Calif. 94143-0663, USA.


Neonatal stroke leads to mortality and severe morbidity, but there is no effective treatment currently available. Erythropoietin (EPO) has been shown to promote cytoprotection and neurogenesis and decrease subventricular zone morphologic changes following brain injury. The long-term cellular response to EPO has not been defined, and local changes in cell fate decision may play a role in functional improvement. We performed middle cerebral artery occlusion in P10 rats. EPO treatment (5 U/g i.p.) significantly preserved hemispheric brain volume 6 weeks after injury. Furthermore, EPO increased the percentage of newly generated neurons while decreasing newly generated astrocytes following brain injury, without demonstrating long-term differences in the subventricular zone. These results suggest that EPO may neuroprotect and direct cell fate toward neurogenesis and away from gliogenesis in neonatal stroke.

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