Caffeine injections have saved newborns experiencing oxygen deprivation
Doctors from Europe and the US have discovered that caffeine injections suppress the massive death of nerve cells in newborns who experience oxygen deprivation. This therapy decreases the likelihood of irreversible damage to the nervous system. This information was reported on Monday by the press office of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE).
"Caffeine proved to be the most effective substance we studied in combating the consequences of oxygen deficiency. Our experiments have shown that caffeine not only possesses anti-inflammatory properties but is also a powerful neuroprotector," said Professor Hemmen Sabir of DZNE, whose words are cited by the center's press office.
Researchers note that approximately one in every thousand newborns suffers from neonatal hypoxia: chronic oxygen deficiency in the first minutes and hours of life due to respiratory problems. In many cases, this leads to the development of neonatal encephalopathy, a complex of nervous system disorders. It can lead to the development of cerebral palsy and other serious nervous system impairments.
Currently, various methods of controlled body temperature reduction, known as hypothermia, are used to combat neonatal encephalopathy. This procedure is not widely available in all regions of the world, and it does not always prevent severe damage to the nervous system; hypothermia does not help approximately 40% of newborns. Therefore, scientists are seeking alternative approaches to prevent the development of neonatal encephalopathy.