CNS Drugs

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 239–244 | Cite as

Programmed Cell Death in Cerebral Ischaemia

Therapeutic Implications
  • Matthew D. Linnik
Leading Article


Programmed cell death (PCD) is the process by which redundant neurons delete themselves during embryonic development in the nervous system. Recent data indicate that a cellular suicide process similar to PCD also contributes to the death of neurons during stroke. This suggests that pharmacological approaches that interrupt PCD may have utility in stroke. Three of these approaches are neurotrophins, endonuclease inhibitors and calpain inhibitors.

Each of these strategies has been demonstrated to inhibit PCD in different in vitro biological systems. They have also proven effective when administered to animals in which a stroke has been surgically induced. Thus, the strategy of inhibiting PCD to diminish damage during ischaemia appears to have merit, and is likely to continue to be a growing area of research that may lead to new and novel therapeutic approaches in acute and chronic neurodegenerative disorders.


Nerve Growth Factor Programme Cell Death Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor Excitatory Amino Acid Calpain Inhibitor 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew D. Linnik
    • 1
  1. 1.Marion Merrell Dow Research Institute and Department of NeurosurgeryUniversity of Cincinnati College of MedicineCincinnatiUSA

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