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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Involvement of matrix metalloproteinase in thrombolysis-associated hemorrhagic transformation after embolic focal ischemia in rats.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Thrombolytic therapy with tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) for acute ischemic stroke remains complicated by risks of hemorrhagic transformation. In this study we used a previously established quantitative rat model of tPA-associated hemorrhage to test the hypothesis that matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are involved. METHODS: Spontaneously hypertensive rats were subjected to embolic focal ischemia by placing homologous blood clots into the middle cerebral artery. Three groups of rats were studied: (1) untreated controls that received saline at 6 hours after ischemia; (2) rats that received tPA alone (10 mg/kg at 6 hours after ischemia); and (3) rats that received tPA plus the broad-spectrum MMP inhibitor BB-94 (50 mg/kg of BB-94 before ischemia and at 3 and 6 hours after ischemia plus tPA at 6 hours). Gelatin zymography was used to quantify MMP levels. A hemoglobin spectrophotometry method was used to quantify cerebral hemorrhage. Ischemic lesions were measured at 24 hours with tetrazolium staining. RESULTS: At 6, 12, and 24 hours, pro-MMP-9 and cleaved MMP-9 were upregulated in ischemic brain. At 12 hours, tPA-treated rats showed significantly higher levels of pro-MMP-9 and cleaved MMP-9 than untreated controls. By 24 hours, all rats showed evidence of hemorrhagic transformation in the ischemic territory. Rats treated with BB-94 and tPA showed significantly reduced hemorrhage volumes compared with those that received tPA alone. There was no effect on infarct size. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that (1) tPA treatment increases levels of MMP-9 after embolic focal cerebral ischemia, (2) MMPs are involved in the mechanism of tPA-associated hemorrhage, and (3) combination therapies with MMP inhibitors may be useful for decreasing the risk and severity of this dreaded complication of thrombolytic therapy.[1]


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