The Paradoxical Effects of Microglia in Ischemic Stroke and the Future of Treatment


  • Alison Fee-ping Chung Simon Fraser University


Deadly if attended to too late, ischemic strokes affect millions of individuals around the world yearly. Microglia are one of the first respondents to brain injury, acting quickly to repair and prevent damage in the event of a stroke. These cells have been long held as beneficial protectors and healers in the neuroimmune response, however they have also been found to hold deleterious effects which may compromise the damaged tissue instead of healing. Given it’s beneficial effects, researchers have attempted to target microglia in ischemic stroke intervention and treatments but due to its paradoxical role, these attempts have been met with great difficulty and many complications. The future of microglial-targeted treatment and intervention methods therefore are uncertain. More research must be conducted using methods which can optimize the benefits while nullifying detriments as well as methods which are able to be easily generalized to the actual humans who experience strokes.