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Neuroscience. 2009 Dec 1;164(2):862-76. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2009.08.021. Epub 2009 Aug 18.

Acute neuroprotection to pilocarpine-induced seizures is not sustained after traumatic brain injury in the developing rat.

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Department of Neurosurgery, David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California Los Angeles, 10833 Le Conte Avenue, 18-228 Semel Institute, Los Angeles, CA 90095-7039, USA.


Following CNS injury there is a period of vulnerability when cells will not easily tolerate a secondary insult. However recent studies have shown that following traumatic brain injury (TBI), as well as hypoxic-ischemic injuries, the CNS may experience a period of protection termed "preconditioning." While there is literature characterizing the properties of vulnerability and preconditioning in the adult rodent, there is an absence of comparable literature in the developing rat. To determine if there is a window of vulnerability in the developing rat, post-natal day 19 animals were subjected to a severe lateral fluid percussion injury followed by pilocarpine (Pc)-induced status epilepticus at 1, 6 or 24 h post TBI. During the first 24 h after TBI, the dorsal hippocampus exhibited less status epilepticus-induced cell death than that normally seen following Pc administration alone. Instead of producing a state of hippocampal vulnerability to activation, TBI produced a state of neuroprotection. However, in a second group of animals evaluated 20 weeks post injury, double-injured animals were statistically indistinguishable in terms of seizure threshold, mossy fiber sprouting and cell survival when compared to those treated with Pc alone. TBI, therefore, produced a temporary state of neuroprotection from seizure-induced cell death in the developing rat; however, this ultimately conferred no long-term protection from altered hippocampal circuit rearrangements, enhanced excitability or later convulsive seizures.

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