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Neuropathology. 2011 Apr;31(2):112-21. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1789.2010.01137.x.

A rat model of mild cognitive impairment associated with vascular factor.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Huadong Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.


Vascular factors have been shown to be important in cognitive impairment and dementia in the elderly. Recent evidence suggests that treatment at the stage of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) can prevent progression to dementia. In this study we established a rat model that simulates the pathophysiological condition of vascular MCI, characterized by gait disturbance in the absence of motor deficits and mild working memory dysfunction and not being demented. Initiation of vascular MCI pathology was not associated with loss of neurons, but was correlated with microglial activation and white matter changes. This MCI rat model will be useful for analysis of effects of vascular factors on cognitive dysfunction and neurodegenerative processes and development of drugs for treatment of this disorder.

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