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Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2010 Nov;48(11):718-28.

Imaging inflammation in stroke using magnetic resonance imaging.

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CNRS, UMR 5220, Inserm, U630, Insa de Lyon, Creatis, Bron, France.


Stroke is the third leading cause of death, after myocardial infarction and cancer, and the leading cause of permanent disability in Western countries. Although anti-inflammatory drugs have shown very promising results in preclinical rodent studies, they appeared to be ineffective against stroke in clinical trials. In this context, non-invasive detection of inflammatory cells after brain ischemia could be helpful (i) to select patients who may benefit from anti-inflammatory treatment, and/or (ii) to target an adequate individualized therapeutic time window. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) coupled with injection of iron oxide nanoparticles, a contrast agent taken up by macrophages ex vivo and in vivo, appears to be a promising tool for this purpose. This review focuses on the use of this technique to image inflammation in pre-clinical and clinical studies of stroke. Despite current limitations, MRI of inflammation may become an important tool for the investigation of novel ischemic stroke therapeutics targeting inflammation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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