Press Release

Thirteen Hospitals Revolutionize Stroke Clinical Research

03.17.2014

Regional stroke trials network formed through funding from the National Institutes of Health

Palo Alto, California —Stroke is the leading cause of death in the United States. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted, causing brain cells in the immediate area to die because they stop getting oxygen. Stroke can also occur when a vessel breaks and bleeds into the brain. To help advance stroke prevention, treatment and recovery, 13 medical centers have formed a Regional Stroke Trials Network. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), will fund and manage the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Stroke Trials Network.

The network will share data and work together to help improve stroke care and outcomes for all patients. Participants in Stanford StrokeNet include:

  • California Pacific Medical Center, Newborn Intensive Care Unit
  • Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula
  • Dominican Hospital 
  • El Camino Hospital (including Los Gatos Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation)
  • Good Samaritan Hospital
  • Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford
  • Mills-Peninsula Health Services
  • O'Connor Hospital
  • Oregon Health & Science University
  • Palo Alto Medical Foundation
  • Regional Medical Center of San Jose
  • Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
  • Stanford Hospital & Clinics

Together with 24 other regional networks, Stanford StrokeNet will conduct all major NIH funded clinical studies in stroke prevention, treatment and recovery. Each center will receive five-year funding, with $200,000 in research costs and $50,000 for training stroke clinical researchers per year over the first three years, and additional funds driven by the completion of milestones. Stanford Hospital & Clinics will lead the network as the Regional Coordinating Stroke Center, working closely with the other network participants on patient recruitment.

"This network will enable us to improve acute therapy and outcomes for stroke, while possibly discovering the most effective ways to prevent it," said Dr. Greg Albers, director of the Stanford Stroke Center and professor of neurology and neurological sciences at the Stanford University School of Medicine. "Together with the participating facilities, we have a tremendous opportunity to positively impact patient health by providing more patients with opportunities to participate in clinical trials."

Historically, the model for stroke clinical trials was to create large teams of personnel and infrastructure, which were then disassembled once the trial was completed. This led to delays in patient recruitment and additional costs when new trials were initiated, with some stroke clinical trials lasting many years longer than anticipated and costing millions of dollars more than the original estimates. This network will allow the most promising therapies to quickly advance to the clinic, to improve prevention, acute treatment, or rehabilitation of the stroke patient.

All participants in Stanford StrokeNet demonstrated experience in stroke research and recruitment, including the ability to enroll underrepresented populations, and are required to offer access to the full range of specialties that are involved in stroke care. These include: emergency medicine, neurosurgery, interventional neuroradiology, vascular neurology, neurointensive care, neuroimaging, stroke rehabilitation and pediatric neurology.

About National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

NINDS is the nation's leading funder of research on the brain and nervous system. The NINDS mission is to reduce the burden of neurological disease – a burden borne by every age group, by every segment of society, by people all over the world.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH)

NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

About Stanford Hospital & Clinics 

Stanford Hospital & Clinics, located in Palo Alto, California with multiple facilities throughout the region, is internationally renowned for leading edge and coordinated care in cancer, neurosciences, cardiovascular medicine, surgery, organ transplant, medicine specialties and primary care. Stanford Hospital & Clinics is part of Stanford Medicine, which includes Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford and the Stanford University School of Medicine. Throughout its history, Stanford has been at the forefront of discovery and innovation, as researchers and clinicians work together to improve health, alleviate suffering, and translate medical breakthroughs into better ways to deliver patient care. Stanford Hospital & Clinics: Healing humanity through science and compassion, one patient at a time. For more information, visit: StanfordHospital.org.

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