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Expert Rev Neurother. 2018 Aug;18(8):681-687. doi: 10.1080/14737175.2018.1500459. Epub 2018 Jul 18.

Cerebrolysin: a multi-target drug for recovery after stroke.

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a Department of Neurosciences and Preventive Medicine , Danube University Krems , Krems , Austria.


Cerebrolysin is a neuropeptide preparation with neurotrophic effects and promotes recovery after brain injury. Its preclinical profile promises wide applications due to its multi-target effects. Currently, Cerebrolysin is used for treatment of cerebral ischemia and neurodegeneration. Areas covered: In stroke, earlier clinical trials with Cerebrolysin were performed mostly in mildly affected stroke populations, which usually have a favorable prognosis. Due to this selection, a floor or ceiling effect of recovery measures in the mild cases may have prevented to show a clear benefit between treatment groups. In contrast, subgroup analyses of more severely affected patients reveal a strikingly positive effect for enhanced recovery. Based on the findings from several studies, it became evident that the effect size of Cerebrolysin was increasing with stroke severity. Other controlled studies showed that Cerebrolysin can be safely used in combination with thrombolysis. More recently, Cerebrolysin has been tested not only for neuroprotection but also for its neurorecovery potential and also showed efficacy in patients with moderate to severe strokes. Expert commentary: Cerebrolysin shows a benefit mostly in moderate to severe ischemic stroke patients and an overall significant effect for functional recovery when combined with neurorehabilitation versus neurorehabilitation alone. This gives lead to the planning of a more rigorous study design in the future.


Cerebrolysin; ischemic stroke; neuroprotection; neurorecovery; neurotrophic factors

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