Blood biomarkers to distinguish ischemic stroke from intracerebral hemorrhage


  • A blood biomarker panel, including glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP), retinol binding protein 4 (RBP-4) and N-terminal pro B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP), taken in suspected stroke patients could potentially be of use to rapidly assess whether thrombolytic therapy is needed prior to hospitalization.

Why this matters

  • Intravenous thrombolysis with recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) and mechanical thrombectomy are thrombolytic therapies designed to recanalize cerebral blood vessels in people with acute ischemic stroke.

  • Early initiation of thrombolysis (within 90 minutes of onset) is associated with significantly reduced functional disability. However, a computed tomography scan is required to rule out intracerebral hemorrhage before thrombolysis can proceed.

  • There is evidence to suggest blood-based biomarkers might be able to quickly identify people with ischemic stroke to facilitate more rapid recanalization and improve outcomes.