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Neuroprotective Mechanisms of Glucagon-like Peptide-1-based Therapies in Ischaemic Stroke: A Systematic Review based on Pre-Clinical Studies

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Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1)-based therapies, GLP-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1RAs) and dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors (DPP-4Is) are widely used for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Increasing evidence suggests that they may provide neuroprotection. The aim of this MiniReview was to systematically evaluate the proposed mechanism of action for GLP-1-based therapies in ischaemic brain damage in animals. We performed a literature search using MEDLINE, EMBASE and The Cochrane Library. GLP-1-based therapies administered before, during or after experimental stroke in diabetic and non-diabetic animals were evaluated. We reviewed 27 studies comprised of 20 involving GLP-1RAs and seven involving DPP-4Is. Both GLP-1RAs and DPP-4Is affected the acute inflammatory response secondary to ischaemia by reducing inflammation, endothelial leakage and excitotoxicity. Both treatments also reduced oxidative stress and apoptosis. GLP-1RAs significantly reduced infarct volume when administered acutely, but not later after stroke. The reported effects of DPP-4Is on infarct volume were inconsistent. GLP-1-RAs reliably improved functional outcome, but the effects on cerebral blood flow were inconclusive. These neuroprotective effects were often attributed to activation of the GLP-1 receptor, but non-GLP-1R-mediated effects have also been suggested. Both GLP-1RAs and DPP-4Is significantly affected inflammation, oxidative stress and apoptosis in animal stroke models; however, data from clinical trials only report therapeutic efficacy for GLP-1RAs. Thus, GLP-1RA administration is the most promising treatment to pursue for patients at risk of stroke or immediately after stroke. Future studies should address acute and prophylactic treatments in stroke patients with and without diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBasic & clinical pharmacology & toxicology
Volume122
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)559-569
Number of pages11
ISSN1742-7843
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018

    Research areas

  • Animals, Brain Ischemia/drug therapy, Glucagon-Like Peptide 1/agonists, Humans, Neuroprotective Agents/pharmacology, Stroke/drug therapy

ID: 56565500