MEDICALLY REVIEWED

Life-saving Drug to Tackle Strokes: A Medical Breakthrough from Down Under

Australia stroke clot

The Heart Research Institute, Australia, has developed a drug to battle stroke. This promising drug might improve blood flow to the brain, dissolve clots and decrease stroke-induced brain injury risk. 

Strokes: A Recurring Threat

Strokes occur when a blood vessel’s blood flow to the brain is interrupted due to a blood clot. If this clot isn’t resolved promptly, it can often cause irreversible brain damage. Strokes impact approximately 27,000 Australians annually.

A First in 30 Years

The drug is named TBO-309. It represents the first major advancement of this nature in over three decades. Australians are due to participate in a trial involving this medication next month.

A Potential Stroke Treatment

Medications like aspirin, which are part of a group of drugs known as blood thinners, have been commonly used in treating heart attacks for years. The arrival of TBO-309, however, opens a new chapter in stroke treatment. The drug shows promise in treating strokes, offering a new approach to managing this prevalent health issue.

View of the Lead Researcher

Professor Shaun Jackson, the lead researcher on this project, shed light on the significance of this discovery. He stated that similar to how aspirin is given to patients who’ve had a heart attack, this new drug could offer equivalent benefits to those at risk of a stroke.

Jackson expressed his optimism about the drug’s potential by saying, “If this drug can improve blood flow to the brain, without causing excessive bleeding, it could revolutionise traditional ischaemic stroke treatment methods.” He further added, “It could enhance the quality of life for thousands of stroke victims. If successful, this discovery will be the first drug breakthrough for stroke treatment in over three decades of research.”

The Need for Speedy Stroke Treatment

The speed of stroke treatment plays a pivotal role in preventing long-term damage. Associate Professor Simone Schoenwaelder, another important voice in this research, emphasised this point. She noted that if TBO-309 can indeed boost blood flow, it would mark a significant breakthrough in stroke treatment.

Schoenwaelder also pointed out an added advantage of TBO-309. Unlike aspirin and other antiplatelets on the market, this drug’s anti-clotting activity doesn’t carry the potentially devastating risk of excessive bleeding. Such bleeding can lead to further brain damage and, in severe cases, death.

A Test for TBO-309

The effectiveness of TBO-309 is now due to be examined in the next phase of trials. Phase II Clinical trials are set to commence in August, and around 80 stroke patients across Australia will get the opportunity to access the drug. The trial’s objective is to see how the drug affects blood flow in the brain.

More Treatment Options

The implications of the drug’s success in these clinical trials are profound. If TBO-309 proves successful, up to 90 per cent of stroke sufferers could have additional treatment options during the critical first 12 hours after a stroke. This development signals a new era in stroke treatment, bringing hope to thousands affected by this condition each year.

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