Intervention with environmental enrichment after experimental brain trauma enhances cognitive recovery in male but not female rats.

Abstract

Environmental enrichment (EE) has been repeatedly shown to affect multiple aspects of brain function, and is known to enhance cognitive recovery after experimental traumatic brain injury (TBI) in males. However, the impact of gender on how EE affects behavioral performance after experimental TBI have not been studied. Male and normally cycling female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent controlled cortical impact injury or sham surgery and then were placed in either a standard or enriched housing environment. Motor function was assessed both pre-injury and for the first 5 days after injury. Spatial memory was assessed beginning 14 days after injury. Placement in an EE after TBI enhanced spatial memory performance in male but not female rats. EE did not impact motor performance in this setting. These findings have gender specific implications for how to approach and evaluate treatments and interventions after TBI.

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@article{Wagner2002InterventionWE, title={Intervention with environmental enrichment after experimental brain trauma enhances cognitive recovery in male but not female rats.}, author={Amy K Wagner and Anthony E. Kline and Joshua E Sokoloski and Ross D. Zafonte and Edwin Capulong and Cedward Dixon}, journal={Neuroscience letters}, year={2002}, volume={334 3}, pages={165-8} }