Hypoxia-ischemia (HI) remains a major cause of perinatal mortality and chronic disability in newborns worldwide (1-6 for 1000 births) with a high risk of future motor, behavioral and neurological deficits. Keeping newborns under moderate hypothermia is the unique therapeutic approach but is not sufficiently successful as nearly 50% of infants do not respond to it. In a 7-day post-natal rat model of HI, we used pregnant and breastfeeding female nutritional supplementation with piceatannol (PIC), a polyphenol naturally found in berries, grapes and passion fruit, as a neuroprotective strategy. Maternal supplementation led to neuroprotection against neonate brain damage and reversed their sensorimotor deficits as well as cognitive impairments. Neuroprotection of per os maternal supplementation with PIC is a preventive strategy to counteract brain damage in pups induced by HI. This nutritional approach could easily be adopted as a preventive strategy in humans.
Keywords: Behavior; Magnetic resonance imaging; Maternal supplementation; Neonatal hypoxia-ischemia; Neuroprotection; Piceatannol.
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