The therapeutic potential of anti-cytokine strategies in central nervous system ischaemia

W. M. Clark, H. L. Lutsep

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Central nervous system (CNS) ischaemia is associated with an acute inflammatory response which appears to potentiate CNS injury, especially following reperfusion. This response includes the release of inflammatory mediators, including the cytokines interleukin-1 (IL-1) and TNF-α. These trigger the production of additional cytokines, including IL-6, and activate leukocytes which infiltrate the CNS. IL-6 appears to play a central role in modulating this response, exhibiting both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory activities. Preliminary clinical studies suggest that plasma levels of IL-6 are correlated with stroke size and functional recovery. Conversely, brain levels of cytokines have been demonstrated to increase following experimental ischaemia. Although there are at present no clinical 'anti-cytokine' treatment studies, experimental studies modulating cytokines have shown neuroprotection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-415
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Opinion on Investigational Drugs
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997


  • central nervous system
  • cytokines
  • interleukin-1 receptor antagonist
  • interleukins
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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