Research identifies new experimental drug for stroke

February 29, 2012

Research led by Nicolas Bazan, MD, PhD, Boyd Professor and Director of the Neuroscience Center of Excellence at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, has found that a synthetic molecule protected the brain in a model of experimental stroke. Dr. Bazan was issued a patent on the molecule called LAU-0901, a low molecular weight drug that crosses the blood-brain barrier. The findings are published in the March 2012 issue of Translational Stroke Research.

During an , the most common kind, the body releases signals that cause neuroinflammation which leads to a buildup of chemicals that harm the brain. Platelet-activating factor (PAF) accumulates, and inhibition of this process plays a critical role in neuronal survival.

"LAU-0901 is able to reduce this incorrect signaling and inhibit the PAF receptor, which reduces multiple neuroinflammatory signals and greatly lessens the severity of damage in experimental stroke," notes Dr. Bazan.

The research team used in conjunction with behavior and immunohistopathology to further study this novel therapeutic approach. The researchers report that LAU-0901, given two hours after the onset of experimental stroke, lessened the severity of brain damage, significantly reduced lesions in the brain, and improved coordination and movement. LAU-0901 produced no discernible side effects. These findings suggest LAU-0901 is a promising neuroprotectant that provides the basis for future therapeutics in patients suffering ischemic stroke.

Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. Conventional therapies for ischemic stroke include thrombolytic therapy, prevention of inappropriate coagulation and thrombosis, and surgery to repair vascular abnormalities.Only one FDA-approved therapy exists for treatment of , the thrombolytic (tPA), but only 5𔃆% of all ischemic stroke patients are eligible for treatment with tPA.

The research team also included Professor Ludmila Belayev and MD/PhD student Tiffany Niemoller Eady at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, as well as Dr. Julio Alvarez Builla and other scientists from the University of Alcala, Spain, and Dr. Andre Obenaus at the University of Loma Linda.

Explore further: Use of clot busters for stroke increased from 2005 to 2009, but still low

Related Stories

Do-it-yourself brain repair following stroke

July 11, 2011

Stroke is a leading cause of long-term disability and death in the United States. A team of researchers — led by Gregory Bix, at Texas A&M College of Medicine, College Station — has identified a way to exploit one ...

Recommended for you

Artificial heart design features porous plastic foam

October 2, 2015

Artificial hearts with multiple moving parts increase the chance of failure; scientists have worked up a device which is a single piece. No less interesting is the material they used; the team is taking a page out of soft ...

What powers the pumping heart?

September 25, 2015

Researchers at the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research have uncovered a treasure trove of proteins, which hold answers about how our heart pumps—a phenomenon known as contractility.

Sticky gel helps stem cells heal rat hearts

September 24, 2015

A sticky, protein-rich gel created by Johns Hopkins researchers appears to help stem cells stay on or in rat hearts and restore their metabolism after transplantation, improving cardiac function after simulated heart attacks, ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.