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Abstract #3276

Longitudinal functional MRI for animal studies of neurovascular coupling in healthy ageing

Andrew Crofts1, Melissa Trotman-Lucas2, Justyna Janus3, Claire Gibson2, and Michael Kelly3

1Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour, University of Leicester, Leicester, United Kingdom, 2School of Psychology, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom, 3Core Biotechnology Services, University of Leicester, Leicester, United Kingdom

Due to effects of anaesthetic on the BOLD signal, or use of toxic anaesthetics, longitudinal preclinical fMRI studies are uncommon, and studies of age-related disease progression show high variability and use large numbers of animals. This study uses a novel anaesthetic protocol in 11 rats to study changes in the BOLD signal with age. A strong, reproducible BOLD response to forepaw stimulation is found between 7 and 12 months old, and at 15 months old the number of active voxels is reduced by half. This shows that the protocol is suitable for longitudinal studies of ageing.

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