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Brain Res. 2010 Aug 6;1347:125-31. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2010.05.075. Epub 2010 Jun 1.

Activated protein C analog with reduced anticoagulant activity improves functional recovery and reduces bleeding risk following controlled cortical impact.

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Center for Neurodegenerative and Vascular Brain Disorders, University of Rochester Medical Center, Arthur Kornberg Medical Research Building, 601 Elmwood Ave, Box 670, Rochester, New York 14642, USA.


The anticoagulant activated protein C (APC) protects neurons and vascular cells from injury through its direct cytoprotective effects that are independent of its anticoagulant action. Wild-type recombinant murine APC (wt-APC) exerts significant neuroprotection in mice if administered early after traumatic brain injury (TBI). Here, we compared efficacy and safety of a late therapy for TBI with wt-APC and 3K3A-APC, an APC analog with approximately 80% reduced anticoagulant activity but normal cytoprotective activity, using a controlled cortical impact model of TBI. Mice received 0.8 mg/kg intraperitoneally of recombinant murine 3K3A-APC, wt-APC or saline at 6, 12, 24 and 48 h after injury. 3K3A-APC (n=15) relative to wt-APC (n=15) improved motor and sensorimotor recovery within the first three days post-trauma as demonstrated by rotarod (p<0.05) and beam balance test (p<0.05), respectively. Both, wt-APC and 3K3A-APC reduced the lesion volume seven days after injury by 36% (n=8; p<0.01) and 56% (n=8; p<0.01), respectively, compared to saline (n=8). Three days post-TBI, the hemoglobin levels in the injured brain were increased by approximately 3-fold after wt-APC treatment compared to saline indicating an increased risk for intracerebral bleeding. In contrast, comparable levels of brain hemoglobin in 3K3A-APC-treated and saline-treated mice suggested that 3K3A-APC treatment did not increase risk for bleeding after TBI. Thus, compared to wt-APC, 3K3A-APC is more efficacious and safer therapy for TBI with no risk for intracerebral hemorrhage.

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