Effects of methylprednisolone and treadmill training on spinal cord injury in experimental rats

  • Authors:
    • Jian-Tao Liu
    • Shuo-Yu Wang
    • Han-Ping Xiao
    • Bing Gu
    • Hua-Nan Li
  • View Affiliations

  • Published online on: October 8, 2021     https://doi.org/10.3892/etm.2021.10849
  • Article Number: 1413
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Methylprednisolone (MP) is widely used to treat clinical spinal cord injury (SCI). Treadmill training is also considered an important treatment after SCI to improve motor function in patients, resulting in an evident improvement. Therefore, the present study was designed to evaluate and contrast the effects of MP and treadmill training administered in combination or alone after SCI in adult rats. A rat spinal cord T10 contusion model was induced in Sprague‑Dawley rats using an impact device. A total of 40 rats were divided into four groups (n=10 rats/group): the MP, MP + treadmill training, SCI and sham group. At 30 min after injury, MP sodium succinate was injected into the rats of the MP and MP + treadmill training groups. Treadmill training began on the second week post‑trauma and was performed for 8 weeks. The results showed that MP therapy combined with treadmill training significantly ameliorated several parameters of hind limb function compared with those by MP treatment alone (all P<0.05). A significantly reduced immunopositive area of Nogo receptor and chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans and reduced relative expression of these mRNAs were found in the MP + treadmill training group (P<0.05) compared with the findings in the MP group. In conclusion, the present study indicated that combined MP and treadmill training treatment improved the recovery of hind limb function in rats with SCI, thus potentially representing a promising strategy to cure SCI.
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