Navigation Links
Compounds Found to Protect Rabbits From Cerebral Palsy
Date:2/25/2009

Discovery called exciting, but human application remains elusive, expert says

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 25 (HealthDay News) -- In experiments with rabbits, a team of scientists has created two chemical compounds that appear to protect a fetus from developing cerebral palsy from a lack of oxygen.

"It is known that if you have too much nitric oxide in the brain, which can be produced during hypoxia, it leads to fetal neurodegeneration," said lead researcher Richard B. Silverman, a chemistry professor at Northwestern University.

If such an event occurs during pregnancy, it can lead to brain damage in the fetus that can result in cerebral palsy, Silverman said. "This can happen right at the end of pregnancy," he explained.

Common causes of hypoxia include a pinched umbilical cord or a cord wrapped around the fetus's neck or shoulder.

The report was published online Wednesday in the Annals of Neurology.

Silverman's team developed two compounds that block an enzyme in brain cells that produces nitric oxide. At normal levels, nitric oxide is a neurotransmitter, which is important for brain functioning, but at high levels it can damage brain tissue. An excess of nitric oxide in the brain is believed to play a role in cerebral palsy.

In experiments with rabbits, excess nitric oxide caused most of the fetuses to die, and those that survived were severely brain-damaged, Silverman said.

"If you administer the compounds that we made a half-hour prior to the hypoxic insult, you can protect the fetus from neurodegeneration," Silverman said. All the animals treated with the compounds lived, and those given placebo died. Among animals given just one of the compounds, up to 80 percent were born normal, Silverman said.

Silverman said that he thinks the compounds can be used to treat infants with compromised oxygen levels before cesarean delivery. "The sooner you can protect the fetal brain from nitric oxide, the less neurodegeneration you will have," he said.

The next step is to experiment with these compounds in sheep, Silverman said. "It's a long way to humans," he noted.

Dr. Ernest Graham, an assistant professor of maternal-fetal medicine at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, agrees that using the compounds in clinical practice is a long way off.

"This is very exciting stuff," Graham said. However, he added, how it could be used remains elusive.

Graham said that perhaps the compounds could be used after delivery for infants who appear lethargic or "floppy," or have poor muscle tone, he said. Giving it before delivery would mean giving it to many babies who don't need it, he noted.

Using it before delivery on an infant with a prolapsed cord or similar problem might not be practical, Silverman said. "With these kids, things are moving so fast, I don't know it is going to be practical to give an additional drug," he said.

Cerebral palsy is caused by an injury to the brain before, during or shortly after birth, although it typically is not diagnosed until after the age of 1. Approximately 750,000 children and adults in the United States have a form of cerebral palsy, with most having been born with the condition.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has more on cerebral palsy.



SOURCES: Richard B. Silverman, Ph.D., John Evans Professor of Chemistry, Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill.; Ernest Graham, M.D., assistant professor, maternal-fetal medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore; February 2009, Annals of Neurology


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Compounds that trigger beta cell replication identified by JDRF funded researchers
2. Stunning finding: Compounds protect against cerebral palsy
3. AstraZeneca Licenses Novel Antidepressant Compounds Discovered by Mayo Clinic and Virginia Tech Collaboration
4. New platinum-phosphate compounds kill ovarian cancer cells
5. Scientists exploring new compounds to target muscular dystrophy
6. University of Illinois - Chicago Study: Raisins Contain Compounds that May Inhibit Cavity-causing Bacteria
7. InNexus Biotechnology Announces Third Antibody and Expands Pipeline of Anticancer Compounds
8. USPTO Issues Patent Embodying Methodologies for Abating a Broad Range of Allergens, Pathogens, Viruses, Bacteria, Odors and Volatile Organic Compounds.
9. Study Finds Spice-Rich Marinades Can Reduce Harmful Compounds When Grilling
10. ChromaDex Licenses Green Chemistry Technology to Manufacture a New Class of Super Fruit Compounds
11. Drugs With Marijuana Compounds Dont Boost Adverse Events
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... Shelton, CT (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... and long-term care services, staged a mock evacuation of the facility as part of ... Department, Shelton Fire Department, Echo Hose EMS and Shelton City Emergency Manager, as well ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Ellevate Network, the leading ... to advocate for action towards gender equality at their inaugural Summit in New York ... globe, and reached a social audience of over 3 million. To watch the Mobilize ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Talented host, actor Rob Lowe, is introducing a segment ... of "Success Files," which is an award-winning educational program broadcasted on PBS Member ... with passion and integrity. , Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve in the ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history of the United ... the creation of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and his wife, Millie, ... spent thirty years in the Navy. Following his career as a naval aviator ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... New Orleans, LA (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... fitness centers in the U.S., announced today its plans to open a flagship location ... club will occupy the former Rooms To Go store next to Office Depot in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/19/2017)... , Sept. 19, 2017 HistoSonics, Inc., a venture-backed medical device company developing a ... targeted tissues, announced three leadership team developments today:   ... ... ... Veteran medical device executive Josh Stopek , ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... , Sept. 18, 2017 EpiVax, ... of bioinformatics and immune engineering, today announced ... influenza A (H7N9) vaccine. ... to seasonal influenza and presents a challenge ... prior exposure to be effective. Using state-of-the-art ...
(Date:9/12/2017)...  Consumer reviews on the independent review site Consumer Affairs ... company for hearing aids, ranking it higher than Miracle Ear ... ... For Hearing Aids ... online store that provides high performance, state-of-the-art, German-engineered hearing aids directly ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: