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New treatment could allow regrowing of damaged nerves

RATE THIS! +28
Posted in Science on 4th Apr, 2014 12:09 AM by AlexMuller

Most who suffer from such an injury never fully recover, and many end up with partial or even full paralysis. Although we’ve made great strides in understanding how spinal injuries damage nerves and how we might fix the spinal cord in the future, and even how those patients can cope in the meantime, we still don’t know how to repair the nerves when such an injury occurs.

 

However, scientists at Imperial College London have recently discovered a mechanism that allows them to repair, and even regenerate, nerves in the central nervous system after a spinal cord injury.

 
The research team started by studying the peripheral nervous system (which controls the nerves not associated with the brain and spinal cord). The PNS will actually grow back about 30% of its nerves when damaged, allowing the return of some feeling and movement in those parts of the body. Because the central nervous system (CNS) doesn’t do this, the researchers wanted to understand the process in the PNS and see if they couldn’t also use that process on the CNS.
 
By studying mouse models and cells, they compared the two responses. They discovered that the PNS has chemical processes that signal and jumpstart new nerve growth and that a protein called P300/CBP-associated factor, or PCAF, triggers this process.

Tags: neurosciencespinal cord injuryregenerative medicineparalysis

Read original article » Back to category

Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+2
With each of new discoveries in neuroscience we also learn how much more research is needed to answer many outstanding fundamental questions- progress is great and hopefully will continue
5 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+3
As they stated in this article, this research is still in its early stages. The next step will be more experiments and ultimately a drug that can trigger this regenerative mechanism in humans, leading to clinical trials. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+1
Stem cell work remains important. Researchers have had relative success in turning human stem cells into heart cells, pancreatic beta cells, intestinal cells, liver cells, and nerve cells, raising all sorts of possibilities for regenerative medicine Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+0
This raises the hope that damaged organs could be repaired in patients by reprogramming some of their own adult cells and then encouraging them to generate new tissue. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+1
Some other promising developments in this area have been recently reported: researchers have created new nerve cells in the brains and spinal cords of living mammals without the need for stem cell transplants to replenish lost cells! Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+3
There is a great need to understand better neuronal function and regenerative potential and a number of approaches have been used to address this problem. This is not easy- here is another potential way, we have to see....
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-04
+0
Regenerative medicine is the key. The future of medicine lies in understanding how the body creates itself out of a single cell and the mechanisms by which it renews itself throughout life. Reply
Reply


 

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