Scientists stumble upon drug to lower brain pressure

Victoza and Trulicity, drugs that are currently used to treat Type II diabetes or obesity, may also help reduce brain pressure.

University of Birmingham researchers published in Science Translational Medicine their results from a three-year study. The researchers examined whether Glucagon-Like peptide 1 receptor-1 (GLP-1) agonist drugs could reduce intracranial pressure in rats.

Increased brain pressure is common in traumatic brain injury, hydrocephalus, stroke and also Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH), which causes crippling headaches on a daily basis and extremely high pressure around the nerves of the eye. Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension can cause permanent vision loss in 25% of untreated patients.

The current treatment for IIH is acetazolamie which is not only poorly effective, it also has side effects so severe that almost half of patients stop taking it. Researchers found that the GLP-1 agonist drugs greatly reduced brain pressure not only quickly but dramatically at around 44% with great relief in just 10 minutes of receiving the drug. Best of all, the effects last at least 24 hours.

Researchers are excited about these findings and are hopeful that this potential new therapy will provide patients with high brain pressure and provide them a treatment option in the future.*

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