Evaluation of erythropoietin effects on cerebral ischemia in rats.

OBJECTIVE: Majority of severe disabilities in adults are caused by stroke. The aim of our study is to learn the effects of erythropoietin (EPO), on infarct size in cerebral ischemia and to determine neurological behavioral scores and histopathological evaluation.

MATERIAL & METHODS: In this study 30 adult Sprague-Dawney rats were used. Cerebral ischemia was constituted by intraluminal filament method with a 4-0-nylon suture. Reperfusion was started after two hours of middle cerebral artery occlusion. The rats were randomly divided into two groups as follow: control and EPO groups. Saline 0.9% (0.5 ml/kg) and EPO (5 000 U/kg) was administered intraperitoneally in the groups. Three coronal slices in two millimeters thickness were obtained from cerebrum, cerebellum and brain stem, and were stained with a 2% solution of triphenyltetrazolium chloride. Transparent sheets were placed over each section and the areas of the brain and infarct were measured. The neurological scores were determined at 24th, 48th and 72nd hours after reperfusion.

RESULTS: Percent of ischemic area (%) in cerebrum, cerebellum and brain stem level in EPO groups were less than those of control group (p<0.0001). In addition, we determined that EPO group was better than controls of neurologic score and histopathologically after cerebral ischemia.

CONCLUSIONS: We concluded that EPO may decrease ischemic area in experimental cerebral ischemia in rats and it seems that EPO may be beneficial.

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