The scientists now hope the AMPK protein can be harnessed to protect at-risk patients from suffering permanent brain damage or death if they suffer a stroke.
Dr Sharlin Ahmed, Research Liaison Officer at The Stroke Association says, “When a stroke occurs, the brain is starved of oxygen causing brain cells to become damaged or die. This study suggests that brain cells could in fact have the potential to naturally protect themselves when the blood supply is cut off if a certain defensive process is triggered.
“The findings could help us to understand how we can protect brain cells when a stroke strikes, which could reduce the level of disability that many stroke survivors are left with. However, it is still very early days and a lot more research is needed in this area.”
The Stroke Association