Medical Research Council - London Institute of Medical Sciences

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Natural Repair Strategy

Vascular remodelling – occurring in a limited time window – contributes to natural behavioural recovery after stroke

15 November 2020

Natural Repair Strategy

After a stroke, the brain is quick to work restoring blood flow around the damaged site by re-arranging and re-structuring the neighbouring vessels. However, scientists aren’t clear to what extent this vascular remodelling process helps a patient recover the skills and behaviours they lost during the stroke. To answer this question, neuroscientists used microscopy to track how blood vessels in the mouse motor cortex changed over a two-week period following ischemic stroke. By labelling different parts of the vascular system, including the thin layer of cells that line blood vessels (in green), they were able to identify the exact vascular remodelling time window during which blood flow was restored around the stroke site, which is often a sign that motor skills are about to come back. Understanding this natural repair strategy in the brain could help scientists design new therapies to make the process better and quicker for stroke patients.

Written by Gaëlle Coullon

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