Mimicking partial to total placental insufficiency in a rabbit model of cerebral palsy

Zhongjie Shi, Kehuan Luo, Sanket Jani, Melissa February, Nithi Fernandes, Neha Venkatesh, Nadiya Sharif, Sidhartha Tan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


All placental abruptions begin as partial abruptions, which sometimes manifest as fetal bradycardia. The progression from partial to total abruption was mimicked by a new rabbit model of placental insufficiency, and we compared it, with sufficient statistical power, with the previous model mimicking total placental abruption. The previous model uses total uterine ischemia at E22 or E25 (70% or 79% term, respectively), in pregnant New Zealand white rabbits for 40 min (Full H-I). The new model, Partial+Full H-I, added a 30-min partial ischemia before the 40-min total ischemia. Fetuses were delivered either at E31.5 (full term) vaginally for neurobehavior testing, or by C-section at E25 for ex vivo brain cell viability evaluation. The onset of fetal bradycardia was within the first 2 min of either H-I protocol. There was no difference between Full H-I (n = 442 for E22, 312 for E25) and Partial+Full H-I (n = 154 and 80) groups in death or severely affected kits at E22 (76% vs. 79%) or at E25 (66% vs. 64%), or normal kits at E22 or E25, or any of the individual newborn neurobehavioral tests at any age. No sex differences were found. Partial+Full H-I (n = 6) showed less cell viability than Full H-I (n = 8) at 72-hr ex vivo in the brain regions studied. Partial+Full H-I insult produced similar cerebral palsy phenotype as our previous Full H-I model in a sufficiently powered study and may be more suitable for testing of potential neuroprotectants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2138-2153
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • fetus
  • hypoxia
  • infant
  • newborn
  • placental abruption


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