New Hybrid Drug Derived from Common Spice, May Protect, Rebuild Brain Cells After Stroke
Posted Feb 11 2011 8:33pm
Whether or not you’re fond of Indian, Southeast Asian and Middle Eastern food, stroke researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center think you may become a fan of one of their key spices.
The scientists created a new molecule from curcumin, a chemical component of the golden-colored spice turmeric, and found in laboratory experiments that it affects mechanisms that protect and help regenerate brain cells after stroke. Research scientist Paul A. Lapchak, Ph.D., director of Translational Research in the Department of Neurology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, will present these findings at the American Heart Association International Stroke Conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 6:15 p.m. PST.
Only one drug is now approved for ischemic stroke, which occurs when a clot blocks blood flow to the brain. Commonly called a “clot-busting drug,” tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is injected intravenously to dissolve clots and reinstate blood flow. If blood and oxygen are restored in time, consequences of the stroke, such as speech, memory, movement and other impairments, may be reduced.