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Neuroscientist. 2014 Feb;20(1):15-28. doi: 10.1177/1073858413491146. Epub 2013 Jun 11.

Plasticity in the injured brain: more than molecules matter.

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1David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, CA, USA.


Changes in brain circuits occur within specific paradigms of action in the adult brain. These paradigms include changes in behavioral activity patterns, alterations in environmental experience, and direct brain injury. Each of these paradigms can produce axonal sprouting, dendritic morphology changes, and alterations in synaptic connectivity. Activity-, experience-, and injury-dependent plasticity alter neuronal network function and behavioral output, and in the case of brain injury, may produce neurological recovery. The molecular substrate for adult neuronal plasticity overlaps in these three paradigms in key signaling pathways. These common pathways for adult plasticity suggest common mechanisms for activity-, experience-, and injury-dependent plasticity. These common pathways may also interact to enhance or impede each other during adult recovery of function after injury. This review focuses on common molecular changes evoked during the process of adult neuronal plasticity, with a focus on neural repair in stroke.


axonal sprouting; neural repair; regeneration; rehabilitation; stroke

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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