Weil, Z. M., Fonken, L. K., Walker, W. H. 2nd, Bumgarner, J. R., Liu, J. A., Melendez-Fernandez, O. H., et al. (2020). Dim Light at Night Exacerbates Stroke Outcome. Eur J Neurosci, in press, in press.
Abstract: Circadian rhythms are endogenous biological cycles that synchronize physiology and behavior to promote optimal function. These ~24-hour internal rhythms are set to precisely 24 hours daily by exposure to the sun. However, the prevalence of night-time lighting has the potential to dysregulate these biological functions. Hospital patients may be particularly vulnerable to the consequences of light at night because of their compromised physiological state. A mouse model of stroke (middle cerebral artery occlusion; MCAO) was used to test the hypothesis that exposure to dim light at night impairs responses to a major insult. Stroke lesion size was substantially larger among animals housed in dLAN after reperfusion than animals maintained in dark nights. Mice housed in dLAN for three days after the stroke displayed increased post-stroke anxiety-like behavior. Overall, dLAN amplified pro-inflammatory pathways in the CNS, which may have exacerbated neuronal damage. Our results suggest that exposure to LAN is detrimental to stroke recovery.