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Title: The Role of Stress in Recovery of Function After Spinal Cord Injur
Author: Kirkby, Adam
Advisor: Whelan, Patrick
Keywords: Neuroscience
Abstract: Neurotrauma patients frequently suffer from stress both acutely and chronically following the injury. However, little is understood regarding the impact of stress on recovery of function following spinal cord injury (SCI). The hypothesis for this thesis is that stress will reduce functional recovery from SCI. The first aim of this thesis was to develop a chronic unpredictable stress paradigm. Three measurements were used to verify its effectiveness, circulating corticosteroid levels, weight of adrenal glands and performance in the open field. In aim 2, the effect of stress on locomotor performance was assessed in uninjured mice. Stress did not affect performance on any of the behavioural assays used. The final aim was to assess the effects of stress on recovery from SCI. The Basso Mouse Scale was used to assess recovery which showed that stress negatively influenced scores. These data suggest that chronic stress reduces functional recovery from spinal cord injury.
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