Gene therapy is a promising approach for treatment of stroke and other cerebrovascular diseases, although it may take many years to realize. Gene therapy could occur prior to a stroke (eg, to stabilize atherosclerotic plaques) and/or following a stroke (eg, to prevent vasopasm after subarachnoid hemorrhage [SAH] or reduce injury to neurons by ischemic insult). We have transferred the gene coding for vasoactive calcitonin gene-related peptide via cerebrospinal fluid, and demonstrated attenuation of vasospasm after SAH. Transfer of neuroprotective genes or small interfering RNA for neurotoxic genes has good potential for ischemic stroke. In this brief report, we review recent developments in experimental gene therapy for stroke. Fundamental advances, including development of safer, more specific gene transfer vectors, are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine