Traumatic brain injury causes delayed motor and cognitive impairment in a mutant mouse strain known to exhibit delayed Wallerian degeneration

J Neurosci Res. 1998 Sep 15;53(6):718-27. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-4547(19980915)53:6<718::AID-JNR9>3.0.CO;2-8.


Delayed Wallerian degeneration after neuronal injury is a feature of the C57BL/Wld(s) mouse mutant. In the present study, we examined the effect of unilateral controlled cortical impact (CCI) on motor and cognitive performance in C57BL/6 and C57BL/Wld(s) mice. Performance on a beam-walking task was impaired in both injured groups over the first 3 weeks; however, between 28 and 35 days post injury, C57BL/6 mice continued to improve whereas C57BL/Wld(s) mice showed increased footfaults. In a spatial learning task, C57BL/Wld(s) animals performed consistently better than C57BL/6 mice when tested 7-10 days and 14-17 days following CCI. C57BL/Wld(s) mice also demonstrated improved working memory performance as compared with C57BL/6 mice when trained on days 21-22 after injury; this effect was lost on days 23 and 24, and was not evident in other animals tested in the same task at 28-31 days following injury. These results indicate a marked delay in motor and cognitive impairment following CCI in C57BL/Wld(s) mice compared with injured C57BL/6 controls. This is consistent with previous work showing delayed temporal evolution of neuronal degeneration in C57BL/Wld(s) mice and suggests CCI may be a suitable model for examining the functional consequences of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in genetically altered mice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Injuries / complications*
  • Cognition Disorders / etiology*
  • Forelimb / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Maze Learning / physiology
  • Memory / physiology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Neurologic Mutants
  • Movement Disorders / etiology*
  • Movement Disorders / physiopathology
  • Postural Balance / physiology
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Swimming
  • Time Factors
  • Wallerian Degeneration / complications*
  • Wallerian Degeneration / physiopathology
  • Wounds, Nonpenetrating / complications*