In research that is being hailed as a major breakthrough, cerebral palsy symptoms were dramatically reduced at birth in a study by Wayne State University and the Detroit Medical Center. The study, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, involved the use of rabbits, an anti-inflammatory drug and a nanodevice. Researchers developed a model of cerebral palsy in rabbits that replicated the disorder's neuroinflammation found in the human brains and subsequent motor deficits. The animals that were treated with the anti-inflammatory drug were able to walk and hop within five days. "The importance of this work is it indicates that there is a window in time immediately after birth where it can be identified, and a nanodevice can reverse the features of cerebral palsy," said Dr. Roberto Romero, chief of the National Institutes of Health Perinatology Research Branch at Wayne State University. “This is certainly an exciting breakthrough and it certainly points toward new hope for those affected by cerebral palsy,” said Rangaramanujam M. Kannan, a chemical engineer and a member of the PRB research team and an author of the study. “The use of a rabbit model is a unique aspect of the work, since this model mimics the phenotype of CP as seen in humans. This also illustrates the potential of research collaborations across disciplines in advancing and translating novel technologies for the treatment of debilitating childhood disorders,” said Dr. Sujatha Kannan, a pediatrician and first author of the study.