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Thread: Spinal Cord Advance

  1. #1

    Spinal Cord Advance

    [This message was edited by seneca on May 03, 2002 at 04:13 PM.]

  2. #2

    Ira Black's group was the first (about 2 years ago) to report that bone marrow cells can form neuron-like cells. Even before that time, Mark Noble and his colleagues then at Utah had reported that they were able to isolate a neuronal precursor cell (NRP) from neonatal bone marrow tissues by screening for a cellular adhesion molecule called nCAM. This excited a number of groups and one of the first have now reported positive results based on transplantation of marrow stromal cells or mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) to the spinal cord. Hofstetter, et al. at the Karolinska Institute, in collaboration with Lars Olson who worked with Henreich Cheng to develop peripheral nerve bridging of the spnal cord, reported these results recently. I posted the abstract and paper in the Research Forum


  3. #3

    full article

    Reported May 3, 2002

    Spinal Cord Advance

    NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (Ivanhoe Newswire) --

    Each year around 11,000 people in the United States suffer spinal cord injuries. Recent advances have improved the quality of life for this group, but research underway may one day do even more.

    Some might call Kevin Hoagland determined. He says, "It's going to take more than this to stop me."

    Kevin's a husband, a father, an elected politician, founder of a non-profit group, and a quadriplegic. It happened during a playful wrestling match.

    "I fell the wrong way and in an instant I knew something was wrong," Kevin tells Ivanhoe.

    He knows he will probably never walk, however, still he dreams of a change. "There's a saying in the spinal cord community that quadriplegics want to be paraplegics and paraplegics want to walk. Well, you know what, I'll take the paraplegic route first."

    With research like that of Ira Black, M.D., that dream could be closer to reality.

    "This really could lead to a revolutionary approach in medicine," Dr. Black tells Ivanhoe.

    Wondering if bone marrow cells could be used to grow new nerve cells, Dr. Black, a neurologist at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, N.J., put the pancake-shaped cells in a nutrient solution

    Dr. Black says, "These certainly do not in any way resemble nerve cells. Within minutes the cells started to change before our very eyes."

    The result is cell bodies characteristic of neurons.

    "If it's not a miracle, it's something just this side," says Dr. Black. The ultimate goal is to one day transplant the newly grown cells into spinal cord patients.

    With much work still to do before the therapy is available, Kevin knows where his top priority is. "I try to be the same father I would be if I wasn't in the chair," he says.

    And if you ask his daughter, Morgan, he's the best one.

    Dr. Black says ultimately he hopes to use the technique to help people with Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, stroke or any other condition with dead and dying cells. So far they have implanted the neurons in rats and have discovered they are long-lasting and show no negative side effects.

    If you would like more information, please contact:

    Ira Black, M.D.
    UMDNJ - Robert Wood Johnson
    Medical School
    675 Hoes Lane, CABM 342
    Piscataway, NJ 08854-5638
    (732) 235-5388

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