When the individual experiences a stroke, a 'survival protein' is produced to protect brain cells, research has indicated.
The Iduna protein was produced when brain tissue receives a stressful but not fatal insult, according to researchers, such as that of some strokes. The specific type of cell death in question is also implicated in diabetes and heart attack complications.
Valina Dawson, professor of neurology and neuroscience at Johns Hopkins Institute of Cell Engineering, explained: "Apparently, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
"This protective response was broad in its defence of neurons and glia and blood vessels - the entire brain. It's not just a delay of death, but real protection that lasts for about 72 hours."
In other news, a hormone has been found to improve the long-term recovery from stroke, potentially aiding patients with the condition using home care.
Insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I) was seen to contribute to growth and bone bass, according to the study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
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