Abstract Perinatal hypoxic ischemia (H-I) causes brain damage and long-term neurological impairments, leading to motor dysfunctions and cerebral palsy. Many studies have demonstrated that the TrkB-ERK1/2 signaling pathway plays a key role in mediating the protective effect of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) following perinatal H-I brain injury in experimental animals. In the present study, we explored the neuroprotective effects of the TrkB-specific agonist monoclonal antibody 29D7 on H-I brain injury in neonatal rats. First, we found that intracerebroventricular (icv) administration of 29D7 in normal P7 rats markedly increased the levels of phosphorylated ERK1/2 and phosphorylated AKT in neurons up to 24 h. Second, P7 rats received icv administration of 29D7 and subjected to H-I injury induced by unilateral carotid artery ligation and exposure to hypoxia (8% oxygen). We found that 29D7, to a similar extent to BDNF, significantly inhibited activation of caspase-3, a biochemical hallmark of apoptosis, following H-I injury. Third, we found that this 29D7-mediated neuroprotective action persisted at least up to 5 weeks post-H-I injury as assessed by brain tissue loss, implicating longterm neurotrophic effects rather than an acute delay of cell death. Moreover, the long-term neuroprotective effect of 29D7 was tightly correlated with sensorimotor functional recovery as assessed by a tape-removal test, while 29D7 did not significantly improve rotarod performance. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that pretreatment with the TrkBselective agonist 29D7 significantly increases neuronal survival and behavioral recovery following neonatal hypoxicischemic brain injury.