SNS: Oxygen Therapy May Limit Extent of Stroke Damage

Rodent model shows supplemental oxygen can minimize damage to brain tissue

TUESDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Supplemental oxygen therapy shows promise as a means to reduce brain tissue damage caused during acute ischemic stroke, according to research presented this week at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, held from Oct. 17 to 21 in Chicago.

Cameron L. Rink, Ph.D., and colleagues at Ohio State University in Columbus conducted experiments in a rodent model to discover the window of opportunity for supplemental oxygen therapy. Previous studies which produced potentially harmful or insignificant outcomes from such treatments were due to a limited window of opportunity for the benefits to be reaped, the researchers hypothesize. The rodents underwent middle cerebral artery occlusion and were given normobaric and hyperbaric oxygen during occlusion and at reperfusion.

The researchers found that, during acute ischemic stroke, both normobaric and hyperbaric oxygen attenuated stroke-associated lesion volume, oxidative stress and neurodegeneration, as compared to exacerbating these findings in the brains of rats receiving oxygen only after restored blood flow.

"Directed microarray analysis revealed oxygen-sensitive gene networks related to blood-brain barrier integrity, glutamate metabolism, and apoptosis," the authors write. "Acute ischemic stroke presents a temporal window of opportunity to minimize brain tissue damage using supplemental oxygen therapy. Findings of this study provide key information relevant to the successful design of clinical trials aimed at testing the effects of supplemental oxygen in stroke affected patients."

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