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UNT Health Science Center's Groundbreaking Research Applied to Protecting Brain After Traumatic Injury
Date:7/3/2009

FORT WORTH, Texas, July 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In groundbreaking research, scientists at the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth have determined that rapid estrogen administration can protect the brain following brain injury. These findings are now being tested on human trauma patients in North Texas.

James Simpkins, Ph.D., UNT Health Science Center chair of the Department of Pharmacology and Neuroscience, and Jane Wigginton, M.D., Department of Surgery, Division of Emergency Medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center of Dallas, are translating these animal studies of the protective effects of rapid estrogen treatment to human patients with severe traumatic brain injury and hemorrhagic shock.

"Our animal research has demonstrated that rapid estrogen intervention protects the brain following injury, including stroke or sudden cardiac arrest," Simpkins said. "Now, UT Southwestern and Parkland Health and Hospital System are advancing our research from the UNT Health Science Center to these studies in human subjects. If we can administer these drugs to trauma victims very early, I believe that we can protect the brain and increase survival."

Simpkins' studies in animals found that rapidly administering a single dose of estrogen, a strong anti-oxidant and an anti-inflammatory drug, following a stroke increases brain cell survival by up to 65 percent. Estrogens delivered intravenously post injury may have similar effects on people with traumatic brain injury. "We know these substances can protect the br
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SOURCE University of North Texas Health Science Center/Fort Worth
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