Research into stroke rehabilitation will be boosted by $1 million funding from the Federal government, the Stroke Foundation says.
The three-year Return to Life, Return to Work research package will support research grants via the Medical Research Future Fund.
The funding will include a clinical trial to evaluate perispinal administration of the TNF inhibitor etanercept in Australian stroke patients.
Perispinal etanercept has been used in the US to treat chronic stroke and brain injury in selected patients. It is thought to act by reducing inflammation in the brain and this is the first clinical trial of its type in Australia.
Stroke Foundation CEO Sharon McGowan welcomed the research funding, saying it was needed particularly for younger stroke survivors.
“Around 142,500 Australian stroke survivors are of working age. International evidence shows incidence of stroke among young people is increasing, so we must do more to ensure tailored services and supports are available,” she said.
“Stroke strikes the brain and can leave a lasting impact on independence, family life, finances and careers – particularly for those in their 20s to 50s.
“While advancements in acute stroke treatment mean more Australians are surviving than ever before, recovery can be a long and challenging journey physically, cognitively and mentally.
“This funding package has the potential to provide break-through treatments to those suffering from the impact of stroke allowing them to optimise their recovery and return to the things in life which fulfil them most,” she said.
Applications for the research package are now open. Details including grant requirements and application forms can be found here.