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Abstract #5265

Diffusion tensor imaging in a rat model of brain stem ischemia reveals structural remodeling contralateral to the ischemic lesion

Lydia Wachsmuth1, Jens Minnerup2, Jan-Kolja Strecker2, Kai Diederich2, and Cornelius Faber1

1Clinical Radiology, Experimental NMR, University of Muenster, Muenster, Germany, 2Neurology, University of Muenster, Muenster, Germany

Ischemic stroke of the brain stem affects a considerable number of human patients. However, mechanisms of degeneration and recovery are not well understood and animal models of brain stem ischemia are rare compared to models of cortical stroke. Here we implemented a rat model of brain stem ischemia and applied diffusion tensor MR imaging as a noninvasive means to assess structural connectivity. Probabilistic mapping and histology indicate structural remodeling at the level of thalamus. These results add evidence for a potential compensatory mechanism for the observed partial recovery after brain stem stroke.

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