, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 167–182 | Cite as

Ischemic stroke and select adipose-derived and sex hormones: a review

  • Kristy L. MeadowsEmail author
Review Article


Ischemic stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the USA and is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability worldwide. The principle sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone), both endogenous and exogenous, have profound effects on various stroke outcomes and have become the focus of a number of studies evaluating risk factors and treatment options for ischemic stroke. In addition, the expression of other hormones that may influence stroke outcome, including select adipose-derived hormones (adiponectin, leptin, and ghrelin), can be regulated by sex hormones and are also the focus of several ischemic stroke studies. This review aims to summarize some of the preclinical and clinical studies investigating the principle sex hormones, as well as select adipose-derived hormones, as risk factors or potential treatments for ischemic stroke. In addition, the potential for relaxin, a lesser studied sex hormone, as a novel treatment option for ischemic stroke is explored.


Ischemic stroke Sex hormones Relaxin Adipose-derived hormones Adiponectin Leptin Ghrelin 



I would like to thank Dr. Robert Bridges and Dr. Sandra Ayres for their thoughtful comments on this manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that she has no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Hellenic Endocrine Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cummings School of Veterinary MedicineTufts UniversityNorth GraftonUSA

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