Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) is a heparin-binding polypeptide with potent trophic and protective effects on brain neurons, glia and endothelia. In previous studies, we showed that intravenously administered bFGF reduced the volume of cerebral infarcts following permanent occlusion of the middle cerebral artery in rats. In the current study, we examined the time dependence of bFGF infusion on infarct reduction, and the effect of co-infusion of bFGF with heparin. We found a significant reduction in infarct volume when the bFGF infusion (50 μg/kg per h for 3 h) was begun up to 3 h, but not 4 h after the onset of ischemia. The infarct reducing effects of bFGF were not altered by co-infusion of heparin. These results are potentially important in light of the ongoing clinical trials of intravenous bFGF in acute stroke.
European Journal of Pharmacology – Elsevier
Published: May 26, 1997
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