Cognitive evaluation of traumatically brain-injured rats using serial testing in the Morris water maze.

  • Thompson H
  • LeBold D
  • Marklund N
 et al. 
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Purpose: As deficits in memory and cognition are commonly observed in survivors of traumatic brain injury (TBI), causing reduced quality of life for the patient, a major goal in experimental TBI research is to identify and evaluate cognitive dysfunction. The present study assessed the applicability of the serial Morris water maze (MWM) test to determine cognitive function following experimental TBI in the same group of rats which is particularly important for long-term studies and increasingly valuable for the evaluation of novel treatment strategies. Methods: Male Sprague-Dawley rats (n=27) were anesthetized and subjected to either sham injury (n=9) or lateral fluid percussion (FP) brain injury of moderate severity (n=18). At 4 weeks post-injury, animals were trained in a water maze over 3 days (acquisition/learning phase) to find a submerged platform. At 8 weeks post-injury the hidden platform was then moved to the opposite quadrant, and animals were trained to find the new position of the platform over 3 days. Forty-eight hours later, animals were tested for memory retention in a probe trial in which the platform was not present. Results: Brain-injured animals had significant learning impairment (p

Author-supplied keywords

  • 2006
  • Animal Learning
  • Cognitive Ability
  • Mazes
  • Memory Decay
  • Morris Water Maze Test
  • Rats
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • cognitive function
  • head injury
  • memory deficit
  • multiple time points
  • rats
  • reversal learning
  • shift learning
  • traumatic brain injury
  • water maze

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  • Hilaire J Thompson

  • David G LeBold

  • Niklas Marklund

  • Diego M Morales

  • Andrew P Hagner

  • Tracy K McIntosh

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