Enzyme Might Underlie Some Stroke Damage
The dismal range of options for treating a stroke might be improving. Scientists report that neutralizing an enzyme called NOX4 that shows up in stroke-damaged tissues can limit brain injury in mice. The study appears in the September PLoS Biology.
Stroke treatment is often hampered because the primary available drug, a clot-buster called tPA, is effective only within three hours of a stroke’s onset; many strokes are not detected until after that window has closed.
Knowing the molecular culprits involved in brain tissue damage caused by a stroke might give scientists another angle to exploit as they seek treatments, says Harald Schmidt, a physician and pharmacologist at Maastricht University in the Netherlands.
To that end, Schmidt teamed with an international group of scientists to study the role of NOX4, a member of an enzyme family that makes free radicals—highly reactive molecules that can kill cells and contribute to tissue damage.
National Stroke Association’s mission is to reduce the incidence and impact of stroke by developing compelling education and programs focused on prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and support for all impacted by stroke.