Researchers from CNRS, the University of Cannes-Normandie, the University of Paris-Est-Cartier, and OTR3 are working on a new approach to help stroke victims, a treatment that will restore sensory and motor functions as a result of a stroke.
In France, about 150,000 people suffer from stroke each year. Stroke is the leading cause of acquired disability in adults, and the second leading cause of death in France.
Most of these strokes are due to obstruction of the cerebral artery by blood clot. The only way to prevent neurons from dying because they are deprived of oxygen is to eliminate this clot. This action is only possible in the first hours after stroke, which can treat only a minority of patients.
Given this, a team led by CNRS researcher Miriam Bernodin, decided to explore a new path and was interested in the cell environment, also known as extracellular matrix. The matrix is used to support cells. When a stroke occurs, it disrupts the matrix, which increases neuronal death.
The team injected a rat with an agent similar to the components that make up the cell matrix. This injected agent after stroke proved ineffective, since it allowed to protect the matrix that was affected. This agent has also helped promote the development of new neurons to promote the recovery of motor sensory functions.
Currently only tested on rats, this promising pathway should be the subject of pilot clinical trials by the end of 2019.