Vice President Joe Biden came out on top of Thursday night's vice presidential debate with Republican challenger Paul Ryan, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

The energetic Biden claimed a five-point victory - 42 percent to 37 percent - among registered voters, with a similar margin among independents. Nearly a quarter of registered voters and about a third of independents were unsure who did a better job during the debate at Center College in Danville, Kentucky.

Democrats will be hoping Biden's performance helps US President Barack Obama recover from a week-long slide in the polls after his poor showing against Mitt Romney in the first presidential debate on October 3. Thursday's Reuters/Ipsos tracking poll showed Romney leading Obama 47 percent to 44 percent nationwide.

Biden, 69, interrupted Ryan, 42, on multiple occasions and spent much of the debate grinning when his opponent spoke, leading some conservative commentators to accuse Biden of being rude. But while both sides claimed victory, neither Biden's nor Ryan's favorability numbers changed considerably over the course of the debate, and Biden maintained his lead in this measure. After the debate, 54 percent of registered voters held a favorable opinion of Biden, compared to 50 percent for Ryan.

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