Existing anti-stroke drug also effective treatment for middle-ear infections

An existing anti-stroke drug is an effective treatment for middle-ear infections, showing the ability to suppress mucus overproduction, improve bacterial clearance and reduce hearing loss, according to researchers at Georgia State University and the University of Rochester.

The findings could result in a novel, non-antibiotic treatment for otitis media, or middle-ear infection, possibly through topical drug delivery. Vinpocetine, the drug involved in the study, has long been used to treat neurological disorders such as stroke.

The study found topical administration of Vinpocetine suppressed inflammation and the overproduction of mucus induced by Streptococcus pneumonia bacteria, improved hearing loss in the middle ear and significantly improved bacterial clearance in animal studies.