Table of Contents
ISRN Neurology
Volume 2013, Article ID 159184, 9 pages
Research Article

Motor Skill Training Promotes Sensorimotor Recovery and Increases Microtubule-Associated Protein-2 (MAP-2) Immunoreactivity in the Motor Cortex after Intracerebral Hemorrhage in the Rat

1Post Graduate Programme in Neuroscience, Institute of Basic Health Sciences, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
2Physiotherapy Department, Federal University of Health Sciences of Porto Alegre, UFCSPA, Rua Sarmento Leite 245, 90050-170 Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
3Faculty of Nursing, Nutrition and Physiotherapy, PUCRS, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
4Department of Biochemistry, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil

Received 10 April 2013; Accepted 15 May 2013

Academic Editors: P. Annunziata, T. den Heijer, P. Giannakopoulos, Y. Ohyagi, E. M. Wassermann, and S. Weis

Copyright © 2013 M. V. Santos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Motor skill learning may induce behavioral and neurophysiological adaptations after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). Learning a new motor skill is associated with dendritic reorganization and requires protein synthesis and expression of MAP-2. The purpose of this study was to evaluate motor performance and expression of MAP-2 in the motor cortex of rats submitted to intracerebral hemorrhage model (ICH) and skill task training (SK) or unskilled training (US) during 4 weeks. The Staircase test was used for behavioral evaluation, and relative optical densities and morphometrical analysis were used to estimate MAP-2 immunoreactivity and parameters of brain tissue in both motor cortices. Results show that skill task training performed with the impaired forelimb was able to increase MAP-2 immunoreactivity in the motor cortex either in sham or in ICH groups in both cortices: ipsilesional [F(5,35) = 14.25 ( )] and contralesional hemispheres [F(5,35) = 9.70 ( )]. ICH alone also increased MAP-2 immunoreactivity despite the absence of functional gains. Behavioral evaluation revealed that ICH-SK group performed better than ICH and ICH-US animals in the Staircase test. Data suggest that motor skill training induces plastic modifications in both motor cortices, either in physiological or pathological conditions and that skill motor training produces higher brain plasticity and positive functional outcomes than unskilled training after experimental intracerebral hemorrhage.