Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Blocking key enzyme minimizes stroke injury, research finds

Date:
June 26, 2014
Source:
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Summary:
A drug that blocks the action of the enzyme Cdk5 could substantially reduce brain damage if administered shortly after a stroke, research suggests. The development of a Cdk5 inhibitor as an acute neuroprotective therapy has the potential to reduce stroke injury, researchers report.

Dr. James Bibb, Associate Professor of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics.
Credit: Image courtesy of UT Southwestern Medical Center

A drug that blocks the action of the enzyme Cdk5 could substantially reduce brain damage if administered shortly after a stroke, UT Southwestern Medical Center research suggests.

The findings, reported in the June 11 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, determined in rodent models that aberrant Cdk5 activity causes nerve cell death during stroke.

"If you inhibit Cdk5, then the vast majority of brain tissue stays alive without oxygen for up to one hour," said Dr. James Bibb, Associate Professor of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics at UT Southwestern and senior author of the study. "This result tells us that Cdk5 is a central player in nerve cell death."

More importantly, development of a Cdk5 inhibitor as an acute neuroprotective therapy has the potential to reduce stroke injury.

"If we could block Cdk5 in patients who have just suffered a stroke, we may be able to reduce the number of patients in our hospitals who become disabled or die from stroke. Doing so would have a major impact on health care," Dr. Bibb said.

While several pharmaceutical companies worked to develop Cdk5 inhibitors years ago, these efforts were largely abandoned since research indicated blocking Cdk5 long-term could have detrimental effects. At the time, many scientists thought aberrant Cdk5 activity played a major role in the development of Alzheimer's disease and that Cdk5 inhibition might be beneficial as a treatment.

Based on Dr. Bibb's research and that of others, Cdk5 has both good and bad effects. When working normally, Cdk5 adds phosphates to other proteins that are important to healthy brain function. On the flip side, researchers have found that aberrant Cdk5 activity contributes to nerve cell death following brain injury and can lead to cancer.

"Cdk5 regulates communication between nerve cells and is essential for proper brain function. Therefore, blocking Cdk5 long-term may not be beneficial," Dr. Bibb said. "Until now, the connection between Cdk5 and stroke injury was unknown, as was the potential benefit of acute Cdk5 inhibition as a therapy."

In this study, researchers administered a Cdk5 inhibitor directly into dissected brain slices after adult rodents suffered a stroke, in addition to measuring the post-stroke effects in Cdk5 knockout mice.

"We are not yet at a point where this new treatment can be given for stroke. Nevertheless, this research brings us a step closer to developing the right kinds of drugs," Dr. Bibb said. "We first need to know what mechanisms underlie the disease before targeted treatments can be developed that will be effective. As no Cdk5 blocker exists that works in a pill form, the next step will be to develop a systemic drug that could be used to confirm the study's results and lead to a clinical trial at later stages."

Currently, there is only one FDA-approved drug for acute treatment of stroke, the clot-busting drug tPA. Other treatment options include neurosurgical procedures to help minimize brain damage.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by UT Southwestern Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D. A. Meyer, M. I. Torres-Altoro, Z. Tan, A. Tozzi, M. Di Filippo, V. DiNapoli, F. Plattner, J. W. Kansy, S. A. Benkovic, J. D. Huber, D. B. Miller, P. Greengard, P. Calabresi, C. L. Rosen, J. A. Bibb. Ischemic Stroke Injury Is Mediated by Aberrant Cdk5. Journal of Neuroscience, 2014; 34 (24): 8259 DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4368-13.2014

Cite This Page:

UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Blocking key enzyme minimizes stroke injury, research finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626122002.htm>.
UT Southwestern Medical Center. (2014, June 26). Blocking key enzyme minimizes stroke injury, research finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626122002.htm
UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Blocking key enzyme minimizes stroke injury, research finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626122002.htm (accessed July 26, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

Newsy (July 25, 2014) An online quiz from a required course at Ohio State is making waves for suggesting atheists are inherently smarter than Christians. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins