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Spreading Depression Waves as Mediators of Secondary Injury and of Protective Mechanisms

  • Anna Irwin
  • Wolfgang Walz
Part of the Contemporary Neuroscience book series (CNEURO)

Abstract

Spreading depression (SD) is a well-known phenomenon that involves a transient breakdown of the ion gradients of brain cells. This breakdown has the form of a wave that moves slowly through central nervous system (CNS) tissue. After the wave leaves an area, the tissue appears normal again within a short time, and even several subsequent SD waves do not damage neuronal structure or function. SD was discovered by Leao in 1944, and for a long time it appeared to be a completely artificial phenomenon and irrelevant to CNS function (Somjen et al., 1992), with the exception of it’s possible involvement in the pathogenesis of migraines (Lauritzen, 1987). However, ever since 1977, evidence has accumulated that SD waves play a role in extending the damaged core areas into the surrounding penumbra in focal ischemia. Recently, it has also been shown that SD waves in healthy tissue can have a neuroprotective effect. For these reasons, there is renewed interest in SD and it’s propagation mechanisms.

Keywords

Infarct Volume Focal Cerebral Ischemia Necrotic Core Focal Ischemia Cortical Spreading Depression 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anna Irwin
  • Wolfgang Walz

There are no affiliations available

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