The Continued Promise of Neuroprotection for Acute Stroke Treatment

Shimin Liu and Steven R Levine

Stroke is the second leading cause of death. However, effective pharmocologic treatment options are still extremely limited and applicable to only a small fraction of patents. The translational failure in finding an effective neuroprotectant for ischemic strokes has generated an active discussion in this field. One focus has been on validating systems for testing neuroprotectants. This review discusses some fundamental issues in experimental stroke that are worthy of further exploration. We begin with a general review of the current status of experimental stroke research and then move on to a discussion of the determining factors and processes that control and differentiate the fate of ischemic ischemic cells and tissue. We propose several strategies of neuroprotection for ischemic strokes with an emphasis on manipulating cellular energy state.