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Neuroprotection by remote ischemic conditioning in the setting of acute ischemic stroke: a preclinical two-centre study

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Maryna V. Basalay, Marlene Wiart, Fabien Chauveau, Chloe Dumot, Christelle Leon, Camille Amaz, Radu Bolbos, Diana Cash, Eugene Kim, Laura Mechtouff, Tae Hee Cho, Norbert Nighoghossian, Sean M. Davidson, Michel Ovize, Derek M. Yellon

Original languageEnglish
Article number16874
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Published1 Dec 2020

King's Authors


Reperfusion is the only existing strategy for patients with acute ischemic stroke, however it causes further brain damage itself. A feasible therapy targeting reperfusion injury is remote ischemic conditioning (RIC). This was a two-centre, randomized, blinded international study, using translational imaging endpoints, aimed to examine the neuroprotective effects of RIC in ischemic stroke model. 80 male rats underwent 90-min middle cerebral artery occlusion. RIC consisted of 4 × 5 min cycles of left hind limb ischemia. The primary endpoint was infarct size measured on T2-weighted MRI at 24 h, expressed as percentage of the area-at-risk. Secondary endpoints were: hemispheric space-modifying edema, infarct growth between per-occlusion and 24 h MRI, neurofunctional outcome measured by neuroscores. 47 rats were included in the analysis after applying pre-defined inclusion criteria. RIC significantly reduced infarct size (median, interquartile range: 19% [8%; 32%] vs control: 40% [17%; 59%], p = 0.028). This effect was still significant after adjustment for apparent diffusion coefficient lesion size in multivariate analysis. RIC also improved neuroscores (6 [3; 8] vs control: 9 [7; 11], p = 0.032). Other secondary endpoints were not statistically different between groups. We conclude that RIC in the setting of acute ischemic stroke in rats is safe, reduces infarct size and improves functional recovery.

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