The precise factors involved in the development of a progressive motor dysfunction, a hallmark of immune-mediated demyelinating diseases such as multiple sclerosis, are not well defined. The ability to identify neurologic deficits that result in impaired motor performance early in disease may allow for the identification of therapeutic interventions that slow or eliminate the progression toward a permanent dysfunction. Here we describe the use of three objective, quantitative functional assays (spontaneous activity box, rotarod, and footprint analysis) to detect early neurologic deficits following the initiation of a demyelinating disease with Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV). The results show that the assays are capable of revealing neurologic deficits at the early stages of the demyelinating disease process. These findings are the first to objectively characterize neurologic function in an animal model of progressive CNS demyelination.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental Neuroscience