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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 112-118

A brief physical activity protects against ischemic stroke

1 Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain Repair, Department of Neurosurgery and Brain Repair, University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, FL, USA
2 Department of Neurophysiology and Brain Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences and Medical School, Nagoya City University, Nagoya, Japan

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Naoki Tajiri
Department of Neurophysiology and Brain Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences and Medical School, Nagoya City University, Nagoya
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bc.bc_32_19

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With restricted therapeutic opportunities, stroke remains a relevant, critical disease necessitating study. Due to the unique aspect of ischemic strokes, finding approaches to maintain the vigor of the cerebral vasculature, such as increased angiogenesis, may protect against stroke. Ischemic strokes are caused by disruptions in blood movement in the brain, resulting in a torrent of harmful cerebrovasculature modifications. In an investigation by Pianta et al., Sprague-Dawley rats have been separated into those that undergo exercise prior to middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) and those that were not exposed to physical activity preceding MCAO. The outcomes and results of the current study gave new insights into the capacity of exercise to help prevent ischemic strokes or mitigate poststroke effects. The data collected from the study suggested that rats that went through a short bout of exercise before MCAO presented superior motor performance, more active cells in the peri-infarct region, and reduced infarct sizes. When compared to the control group, the rats that went through exercise also had heightened angiogenesis and improved neuroprotection. Thus, a brief bout of physical activity preceding a stroke may provide neuroprotection by enhancing the strength of the cerebrovasculature in the brain. This notion that even an instant of physical exercise before a stroke is induced can help dampen the effects of ischemic stroke, which could lead to future techniques in preventing the ischemic stroke so that it never happens at all.

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