It has been confirmed that apoptosis, autophagy and necrosis are the three major modes
of cell death. For a long time, necrosis is regarded as a deranged or accidental cell demise. In recent
years, there is evidence showing that necrotic cell death can be a well regulated and orchestrated
event, which is also known as programmed cell death or "necroptosis”. Necroptosis can be triggered
by a variety of external stimuli and regulated by a caspase-independent pathway. It plays a key role
in the pathogenesis of some diseases including neurological diseases. In the past two decades, a
variety of studies have revealed that the necroptosis related pathway is activated in stroke, and plays
a crucial role in the pathogenesis of stroke. Moreover, necroptosis may serve as a potential target in
the therapy of stroke because genetic or pharmacological inhibition of necroptosis has been shown
to be neuroprotective in stroke in vitro and in vivo. In this review, we briefly summarize recent
advances in necroptosis, introduce the mechanism and strategies targeting necroptosis in stroke, and
finally propose some issues in the treatment of stroke by targeting necroptosis.
Keywords: Programmed cell death, necroptosis, stroke, RIP1, RIP3, MLKL, Nec-1.
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