Early effect of thrombolysis on structural brain network organisation after anterior‐circulation stroke in the randomized WAKE‐UP trial

Schlemm, E. et al. (2022) Early effect of thrombolysis on structural brain network organisation after anterior‐circulation stroke in the randomized WAKE‐UP trial. Human Brain Mapping, 43(16), pp. 5053-5065. (doi: 10.1002/hbm.26073) (PMID:36102287) (PMCID:PMC9582379)

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The symptoms of acute ischemic stroke can be attributed to disruption of the brain network architecture. Systemic thrombolysis is an effective treatment that preserves structural connectivity in the first days after the event. Its effect on the evolution of global network organisation is, however, not well understood. We present a secondary analysis of 269 patients from the randomized WAKE-UP trial, comparing 127 imaging-selected patients treated with alteplase with 142 controls who received placebo. We used indirect network mapping to quantify the impact of ischemic lesions on structural brain network organisation in terms of both global parameters of segregation and integration, and local disruption of individual connections. Network damage was estimated before randomization and again 22 to 36 h after administration of either alteplase or placebo. Evolution of structural network organisation was characterised by a loss in integration and gain in segregation, and this trajectory was attenuated by the administration of alteplase. Preserved brain network organization was associated with excellent functional outcome. Furthermore, the protective effect of alteplase was spatio-topologically nonuniform, concentrating on a subnetwork of high centrality supported in the salvageable white matter surrounding the ischemic cores. This interplay between the location of the lesion, the pathophysiology of the ischemic penumbra, and the spatial embedding of the brain network explains the observed potential of thrombolysis to attenuate topological network damage early after stroke. Our findings might, in the future, lead to new brain network-informed imaging biomarkers and improved prognostication in ischemic stroke.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Work on the presented project was supported by funding from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation)—178316478—C1 (CG) & C2 (BC, GT).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Muir, Professor Keith
Authors: Schlemm, E., Jensen, M., Kuceyeski, A., Jamison, K., Ingwersen, T., Mayer, C., Königsberg, A., Boutitie, F., Ebinger, M., Endres, M., Fiebach, J. B., Fiehler, J., Galinovic, I., Lemmens, R., Muir, K. W., Nighoghossian, N., Pedraza, S., Puig, J., Simonsen, C. Z., Thijs, V., Wouters, A., Gerloff, C., Thomalla, G., and Cheng, B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Human Brain Mapping
ISSN (Online):1097-0193
Published Online:14 September 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in Human Brain Mapping 43(16): 5053-5065
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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