New approach to stroke therapy

LMU researchers developed a new strategy for the treatment of stroke, which could help to improve blood flow to ischemic brain. Strokes are due to a localized reduction in the blood supply to the brain, mainly due to the blockage of a vessel by a blood clot. This can lead to the death and irreversible loss of nerve cells. In about 90% of cases, no dedicated treatment is available that can effectively prevent serious damage following an acute stroke.

A team led by LMU researcher Professor Nikolaus Plesnila has now shown, in an animal model, that inhalation of nitric oxide (NO), a chemical compound which is itself toxic, can improve perfusion of the brain in the aftermath of an . Brain function in treated animals was significantly improved as compared to in controls that had not been given NO.

"In collaboration with colleagues at Harvard Medical School, we have just begun to test whether or not NO has a comparable effect in humans. If so, we could then initiate a full-scale international clinical study," says Plesnila. "If such a trial were successful, the new therapy could be introduced into the clinic very quickly. NO is already widely used for the management of several lung diseases, and could even be administered as required in ambulances and other rescue vehicles."(suwe/PH) (, 2. March 2012)

More information: Inhalation of Nitric Oxide Prevents Ischemic Brain Damage in Experimental Stroke by Selective Dilatation of Collateral Arterioles, N.A. Terpolilli et al. Circulation Research, 2012; 110:727-738 doi:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.111.253419

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Do-it-yourself brain repair following stroke

Jul 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 ...

Children can have recurrent strokes

Feb 24, 2010

Children can have strokes, and the strokes can recur, usually within a month, according to pediatric researchers. Unfortunately, the strokes often go unrecognized the first time, and the child does not receive treatment before ...

Recommended for you

Vitamin K antagonist plus clopidogrel feasible for PCI

Sep 19, 2014

(HealthDay)—Vitamin K antagonists (VKA) combined with clopidogrel may be a better alternative to triple anticoagulant therapy in patients on long-term VKA undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) ...

How pneumonia bacteria can compromise heart health

Sep 19, 2014

Bacterial pneumonia in adults carries an elevated risk for adverse cardiac events (such as heart failure, arrhythmias, and heart attacks) that contribute substantially to mortality—but how the heart is ...

An autoimmune response may contribute to hypertension

Sep 17, 2014

High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart attack, stroke, chronic heart failure, and kidney disease. Inflammation is thought to promote the development of high blood pressure, though it is not clear what triggers ...

User comments