Clinical Neuroscience Institute Chosen as Part of International Stroke Trial

National Institutes of Health-funded study targets deadliest form of stroke

DAYTON, Ohio (March 12, 2014) – The Clinical Neuroscience Institute (CNSI) will be one of 70 centers in the United States, Europe and Israel to participate in a clinical trial that could lead to the only form of treatment for those who suffer from the deadliest type of stroke.

The trial – called the MISTIE III – is funded by the National Institutes of HealthOff Site Icon and targets intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), a type of stroke that causes sudden bleeding into brain tissue. An ICH often leads to death and when it doesn’t, it leaves patients with dramatic, life-altering consequences. ICH is a world-wide problem for which there is currently no effective treatment.

There are two types of strokes: those that are caused by a blood clot or blockage in an artery and those caused by hemorrhaging in the brain. About 20 percent of strokes – like the ICH – are hemorrhages. The number of strokes classified as ICH represents a smaller number of overall stroke cases, but the cost of care and burden of the disease is perhaps the highest, said John Terry, MD, neurointerventionalist at CNSI.

The MISTIE III – which stands for minimally invasive surgery plus rt-PA for intracerebral hemorrhage evacuation – removes blood from the brain through minimally invasive surgery and intermittent dosing of the clot-busting drug recombinant tissue plasminogen activator. The hope is by removing the blood clot faster, injury to the brain will be reduced, and the patient’s long-term prognosis will improve.

“This trial will allow us to offer the latest therapy in Southwest Ohio before it is widely available,” Dr. Terry said. “I truly believe this is the way hemorrhages will be treated in the future.”

The ability to participate in such a worldwide trial is significant for CNSI, which is part of the Premier Health Specialists network.

“Three years ago we would not have been able to participate in such a study,” Dr. Terry said.

Dr. Terry came to Dayton in 2010 after being recruited by Bryan Ludwig, MD, a neurointerventionalist who had just begun working with Premier Health Specialists. CNSI did not exist when they first arrived in the market, but both – through their previous experience in the industry and understanding of where neurology was headed – knew a more comprehensive approach had to be created in order to stay competitive and offer advanced care for area patients.

“Our vision was to create a neuroscience center that brought sub-specialists under one roof to offer one systemic, collaborative approach to care,” Dr. Ludwig said. “More importantly, we wanted to create a research-based, clinical institute that would successfully carry out research bench-to-bedside care.”

The team embarked on a plan to build such a center and over the past three years successfully formed CNSI – one of several centers in Ohio that encompasses the entire span of neurosciences including neurology, neuro critical care, neuro interventional care and neuro surgery. Unlike other health care systems that offer general neuroscience care through a variety of separate physician practices, CNSI is one cohesive team that operates in a non-competitive fashion.

Today, the center has grown from Dr. Terry and Dr. Ludwig to 120 caregivers including 22 physicians, 19 nurse practitioners, social workers, register nurses and other clinical staff. The institute offers inpatient and outpatient services, procedures and programs that focus on neurologic disorders, the continuity of care for acute illness or injury and long-term chronic conditions. Its areas of expertise include cancer, epilepsy, general neurology, memory disorders, movement disorders, neurological emergencies, spine and back pain, and stroke.

The institute’s ability to participate in clinical trials such as the MISTIE III is made possible by its partnership with Wright State University. Together, the two formed the Wright State University & Premier Health Neuroscience Institute – a groundbreaking public-private partnership that unites the Dayton region’s most advanced biomedical research institution with the clinical resources of its largest hospital system.

“The administrators of the MISTIE III trial were looking for centers that had the infrastructure to carry out and accomplish their goals,” Dr. Terry said. “They need centers that have collaboration among neurointerventionalists, neurosurgeons and neurologists instead of several private groups that competing against one another. We were able to offer that with what we have built.”

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