We performed experiments in cats with a spinal cord penetrating hemisection at T13-L1 level, with and without tamoxifen treatment. The results showed that the numbers of the ipsilateral and contralateral ventral horn neurons were reduced to less than half in the nontreated animals compared with the treated ones. Also, axons myelin sheet was preserved to almost normal values in treated cats. On the contrary, in the untreated animals, their myelin sheet was reduced to 28% at 30 days after injury (DAI), in both the ipsilateral and contralateral regions of the spinal cord. Additionally, we made hindlimb kinematics experiments to study the effects of tamoxifen on cat locomotion after the injury: at 4, 16, and 30 DAI. We observed that the ipsilateral hindlimb angular displacement (AD) of the pendulum-like movements (PLM) during gait locomotion was recovered to almost normal values in treated cats. Contralateral PLM acquired similar values to those obtained in intact cats. At 4 DAI, untreated animals showed a compensatory increment of PLM occurring in the contralateral hindlimb, which was partially recovered at 30 DAI. Our findings indicate that tamoxifen exerts a neuroprotective effect and preserves or produces myelinated axons, which could benefit the locomotion recovery in injured cats.
de la Torre Valdovinos, B., Duenas Jimenez, J. M., Estrada, I. J., Banuelos Pineda, J., Franco Rodriguez, N. E., Lopez Ruiz, J. R., … Duenas Jimenez, S. H. (2016). Tamoxifen Promotes Axonal Preservation and Gait Locomotion Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury in Cats. Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 2016, 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1155/2016/9561968