Cerebrovascular Disorders and Stroke

Cerebrovascular Disorders and Stroke

Our group has strong clinical and experimental expertise in translational research from stroke prevention and acute treatment to rehabilitation. The goal is to develop better tools for stroke acute treatment (e.g. thrombolysis, mechanical thrombectomy, surgical treatment, intensive care treatment) and to understand the factors that modulate neuronal plasticity and recovery of function after stroke, which information is needed in development of safe and effective interventions to help stroke patients with disabilities.

Stroke acute treatment is being actively investigated at the NeuroCenter – Neurology, Kuopio University Hospital (KUH). Our special strength is a strong continuum between basic and clinical research that enables translation of basic research innovations to clinical practices. Translational research group has excellent facilities at the National Animal Centre at Kuopio University, with immediate access to mice and rats and to a small animal imaging. A number of behavioral tests sensitive to brain damage and treatment effects are available.


  • Acute phase treatments (thrombolysis, mechanical thrombectomy, decompressive surgery, intensive care treatment, cost-effectiveness)
  • Mechanisms and imaging of cardiogenic embolism
  • Secondary prevention
  • Rehabilitation


  • Experimental stroke models
  • Predictive behavioral outcome measures
  • Histology
  • Small animal imaging (SPECT, MRI, fMRI)
  • Drug treatment trials


  • Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of rehabilitation
  • Mechanisms of recovery
  • New methods

Research Group

Clinical Research
Pekka Jäkälä, Professor

Experimental Research
Jukka Jolkkonen, Research Director, Adjunct Professor, PhD

Doctoral Student
Abdulhameed Bakreen


SECRETO (Searching for Explanations for Cryptogenic Stroke in the Young)

  • Adjunct Prof. Jukka Putaala, University Hospital of Helsinki, Finland
  • Prof. Risto Roine, University Hospital of Turku, Finland
  • Adjunct Prof. Heikki Numminen, University Hospital of Tampere, Finland
  • Adjunct Prof. Juha Huhtakangas, University Hospital of Oulu, Finland

Mechanisms and Imaging of Cardiogenic Embolism

  • Adjunt Prof. Pirjo Mustonen, Department of Cardiology, Jyväskylä Central Hospital
  • Prof. Ritva Vanninen, Department of Radiology, Kuopio University Hospital

Cost-Effectiveness of Invasive Stroke Treatments

  • Adjunct Prof. Stepani Bendel, Intensive Care Unit, Kuopio University Hospital

Clinical Neurorehabilitation

  • Dr. Kauko Pitkänen, VetreaNeuron, Kuopio, Finland
  • Dr. Sinikka Hiekkala, PT, PhD, The Finnish Association of People with Physical Disabilities, Lahti, Finland
  • Prof. Pasi Karjalainen, Department of Physics, UEF

Translational Studies

  • Prof. Tarja Malm, A.I.Virtanen Institute for Molecular Sciences, University of Eastern Finland
  • Prof. Chuansheng Zhao, Professor, Neurology Department The First Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, China

Selected Publications

See publications at the research director pages – clinical research and experimental research.