Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stroke damage mechanism identified

28.11.2014

Researchers have discovered a mechanism linked to the brain damage often suffered by stroke victims--and are now searching for drugs to block it.

Strokes happen when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off but much of the harm to survivors' memory and other cognitive function is often actually caused by "oxidative stress" in the hours and days after the blood supply resumes.

A team from the University of Leeds and Zhejiang University in China studied this second phase of damage in laboratory mice and found a mechanism in neurons that, if removed, reduced the damage to brain function.

Co-author Dr Lin-Hua Jiang, of the University of Leeds' School of Biomedical Sciences, said: "Until now, much of the drug research has been focussing on the direct damage caused by the loss of blood flow, but this phase can be hard to target. The patient may not even be in the ambulance when it is happening. We have found a mechanism that is linked to the next phase of damage that will often be underway after patients have been admitted to hospital."

The study, published in the journal Cell Death and Disease and supported by a strategic partnership between the University of Leeds and Zhejiang University, looked at the damage caused by the excessive production of chemicals called "reactive oxygen species" in brain tissues immediately after blood supply is re-established. In a healthy brain, there are very low levels of reactive oxygen species, but the quantity dramatically increases after a stroke to levels that are harmful to neurons.

Dr Jiang said: "We identified an 'ion channel' in the membranes of neurons, called TRPM2, which is switched on in the presence of the reactive oxygen species. Basically, an ion channel is a door in the membrane of a cell that allows it to communicate with the outside world-- TRPM2 opens when the harmful levels of reactive oxygen species are present and we found that removing it significantly reduced neuronal cell damage."

The researchers compared the effects of strokes on mice with TRPM2 with a transgenic strain without it.

"In the mice in which the TRPM2 channel does not function, the reactive oxygen species are still produced but the neurons are very much protected. The neuronal death is significantly reduced. More importantly, we observed a significant difference in brain function, with the protected mice demonstrating significantly superior memory in lab tests," Dr Jiang said.

"This study has pinpointed a very promising drug target. We are now screening a large chemical library to find ways of effectively inhibiting this channel. Our ongoing research using animal models is testing whether blockage of this channel can offer protection again brain damage and cognitive dysfunction in stroke patients," Dr Jiang said.

The research was funded by the Royal Society, Alzheimer's Research UK, the Natural Science Foundation of China and the National Basic Research Program of China.

Further information:

Contact: Chris Bunting, Senior Press Officer, University of Leeds; phone: +44 113 343 2049 or email c.j.bunting@leeds.ac.uk.

The full paper: M. Ye et al,'TRPM2 channel deficiency prevents delayed cytosolic Zn2+ accumulation and CA1 pyramidal neuronal death after transient glo Q1 bal ischemia' will be published in Cell Death and Disease on 27 November 2014 [DOI:10.1038/CDDIS.2014.494; URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/CDDIS.2014.494 ]. Copies of the paper are available on request from the University of Leeds press office.

Notes for Editors

The University of Leeds is one of the largest higher education institutions in the UK and a leading research powerhouse. It is a member of the Russell Group of research-intensive universities. The University was ranked in the top 100 of the world's best universities in the QS World University Rankings 2014. http://www.leeds.ac.uk

Alzheimer's Research UK is the UK's leading charity specialising in finding preventions, treatments and a cure for dementia. To help defeat dementia, donate today by visiting http://www.alzheimersresearchuk.org  or calling 0300 111 5555. Alzheimer's Research UK is currently supporting dementia research projects worth over £22 million in leading Universities across the UK. The Defeat Dementia campaign, a pledge to raise £100 million in five years to grow the research field and accelerate progress towards new treatments and preventions, was announced by the Prime Minister at the G8 legacy event on 19 June 2014. For more information visit http://www.dementiablog.org/defeat-dementia

Chris Bunting | EurekAlert!

Further reports about: TRPM2 blood supply brain function damage dementia identified levels neurons oxygen species species

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Correct connections are crucial
26.06.2017 | Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin

nachricht One gene closer to regenerative therapy for muscular disorders
01.06.2017 | Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study shines light on brain cells that coordinate movement

26.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold

26.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Switchable DNA mini-machines store information

26.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>