Stroke Model – MCAO

Animal models of ischemic stroke are procedures inducing cerebral ischemia. The aim is the study of basic processes or potential therapeutic interventions in this disease, and the extension of the pathophysiological knowledge on and/or the improvement of medical treatment of human ischemic stroke.

Probes used to study mouse brain

Several models in different species are currently known to induce cerebral ischemia.1 Global ischemia models, both complete and incomplete, tend to be easier to perform. However, they are less immediately relevant to human stroke than the focal stroke models because global ischemia is not a common feature of human stroke. However, global ischemia is also relevant in various settings, e.g. in global anoxic brain damage due to cardiac arrest. Different species also vary in their susceptibility to the various types of ischemic insults. One example is gerbils. They do not have the circle of Willis and stroke can be induced by common carotid artery occlusion alone.

Middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) is a commonly used stroke model in mice and rats. A major drawback of this model is the risk of incomplete occlusion upon filament insertion. As a quality control, the cortical blood flow can be monitored to ensure that a stroke has, in fact, been induced.1 This can be done using traditional laser Doppler perfusion monitoring by gluing a probe to the skull or by laser speckle contrast imaging (LSCI), which provides real-time imagery of the cerebral blood flow (CBF).
Recommended products: Stroke model kit, PSI HR, PF 5000.

Calibration kit

PeriFlux System 5000 Stroke Model Monitor

PeriFlux System 5000 Stroke Model Monitor is a complete set for studying induced strokes in rats or mice. All the necessary equipment and accessories are delivered together with detailed instructions for use.

Imaging: PeriCam PSI

PeriCam PSI System provides real-time data displaying both the dynamics and the spatial distribution of the perfusion throughout the procedure.

This opens up the possibility to not only confirm complete occlusion, but also to study the extent of the stroke by quantifying the affected area (mm²).

See references


  • Ansari, S., Azari, H., McConnel, D.J., Afzal, A., Mocco, J. Intraluminal middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model for ischemic stroke with laser Doppler flowmetry guidance in mice, Journal of visualized experiments, 2011    
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