When a patient suffers a stroke, oxygen-starved brain cells begin dying within minutes. In these crucial moments, the brain produces a vital catalyst to protect itself and aid in recovery.
That catalyst — an enzyme known as neurolysin — activates a cascade of chemical messengers that reduce cell damage, swelling and inflammation in the brain. Now, a University of Florida Health researcher and his collaborators at Texas Tech University and other universities have discovered two compounds that appear to make the brain-protecting enzyme even more effective.
The discovery is an important, early step in developing new drugs to treat strokes and other neurological disorders, said David A. Ostrov, Ph.D., an associate professor in the UF College of Medicine’s department of pathology, immunology and laboratory medicine.
“We now have a toehold on a way to enhance the activity of neurolysin,” Ostrov said. “It’s an important step in a broader drug-development strategy.”Learn more about UF Health Researcher, Collaborators Discover Compounds That Might Boost Stroke Recovery.