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Study of the neuroprotective effect of simvastatin on cognitive impairments in sepsis surviving animals

Grant number: 17/12462-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology - Physiology of Organs and Systems
Principal researcher:Maria José Alves da Rocha
Grantee:Carlos Henrique Rocha Catalão
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (FFCLRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):21/06496-4 - Systemic inflammation mediated by sepsis promotes Alzheimer's Disease pathology in animal models, BE.EP.PD


The installation of an inflammatory process in the CNS, even in the absence of in situ infection, is commonly referred to as sepsis-associated encephalopathy (SAE). This condition is responsible for brain dysfunction that will result in functional and cognitive impairment in sepsis surviving patients. Although the cognitive disabilities found in sepsis survivors should not be equated with those found in common dementias, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), the presence of certain similar characteristics, such as permanent deficits and specificity for regions responsible for mnemonic processes, are intriguing and suggest common underlying mechanisms between them. In the last decade, evidence indicates that neurodegeneration is associated with the presence of neuroinflammation in various CNS disorders. Our hypothesis is that SAE memory deficits found in sepsis survivors originate from neurodegenerative processes associated with sustained neuroinflammation. In this context, several drugs and therapies have been proposed with the aim to contain the effects of severe sepsis and septic shock, among them statins. However, the several clinical studies are still very controversial about the benefits of statins in this context and many gaps must still be filled to reach a consensus on their use in therapeutic strategies. Therefore, our objective will be to investigate the occurrence of neurodegenerative processes in memory signaling pathways and the possible neuroprotective effect of simvastatin administered prior and continuously to sepsis surviving animals. (AU)

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