Surgery News

Findings may aid in developing therapeutic drugs for stroke and other neurodegenerative diseases

March 30, 2016

The findings also may have significant implications for developing therapeutic drugs to treat other neurodegenerative diseases, said UCF Assistant Professor Sic Chan, a study collaborator who has done extensive research on the role of calcium in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

"Anytime we gain an increased understanding of the molecular mechanism of neurodegeneration, that enhances our ability to make better drugs," he said.

To date, all stroke clinical trials targeting glutamate receptors have failed, largely because of their side effects, an inefficient delivery of compounds from the blood to the brain or the length of time it takes for the drugs to work effectively.

The National Institute on Aging and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, both of which are part of the National Institutes of Health, and the American Heart Association funded the research.

According to the American Heart Association, stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States and is a leading cause of serious, long-term disabilities. NIH-supported research suggests that about one in six Americans will experience a stroke after age 65 and that 10 to 20 percent of strokes are fatal.

Source: University of Central Florida