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Thread: Dramatic growth of grafted stem cells in rat spinal cord

  1. #1
    Senior Member patecatl's Avatar
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    Dramatic growth of grafted stem cells in rat spinal cord

    Scientists have reported that neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells and grafted into rats after a spinal cord injury produced cells with 10s of thousands of axons extending virtually the entire length of the animals' central nervous system.


    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0807121719.htm


    this is awesome news! also something they could proceed to human trials rather quickly...

  2. #2
    Tuszynski said he and his team are attempting to identify the most promising neural stem cell type for repairing spinal cord injuries. They are testing iPSCs, embryonic stem cell-derived cells and many other stem cell types.

    "Ninety-five percent of human clinical trials fail. We are trying to do as much as we possibly can to identify the best way of translating neural stem cell therapies for spinal cord injury to patients. It's easy to forge ahead with incomplete information, but the risk of doing so is greater likelihood of another failed clinical trial. We want to determine as best we can the optimal cell type and best method for human translation so that we can move ahead rationally and, with some luck, successfully."

    While neural stem cell therapies are already advancing to clinical trials, this research raises cautionary notes about moving to human therapy too quickly, said Tuszynski.

  3. #3
    http://neurosciences.ucsd.edu/facult...tuszynski.aspx


    Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Hypothesis: Combinatorial therapeutic strategies can enhance axonal plasticity and regeneration after acute and chronic SCI.

    The failure of the spinal cord to regenerate after injury is caused by (1) lack of production of growth-promoting substances such as growth factors in the injury site, (2) lack of permissive bridges for axon growth within injury sites, (3) deficiency of strong signals for the injured cell to re-enter an active growth state, and (4) blockade of growth by inhibitors in the injured region.

    This research program tests the ability of cells and growth factors to promote regeneration after SCI. Tested cells include stem cells, autologous bone marrow cells, Schwann cells, and fibroblasts. The Tuszynski group is examining both acute and chronic models of SCI.
    Debating on CareCure is like participating in the special-olympics. You may win, but you're still disabled.

  4. #4
    great stuff.
    "I'm manic as hell-
    But I'm goin' strong-
    Left my meds on the sink again-
    My head will be racing by lunchtime"

    <----Scott Weiland---->

  5. #5
    I think the study is very interesting but let's keep in mind NO recovery was seen in the animals.

    Paolo
    In God we trust; all others bring data. - Edwards Deming

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by GRAMMY View Post
    Tuszynski said he and his team are attempting to identify the most promising neural stem cell type for repairing spinal cord injuries. They are testing iPSCs, embryonic stem cell-derived cells and many other stem cell types.

    "Ninety-five percent of human clinical trials fail. We are trying to do as much as we possibly can to identify the best way of translating neural stem cell therapies for spinal cord injury to patients. It's easy to forge ahead with incomplete information, but the risk of doing so is greater likelihood of another failed clinical trial. We want to determine as best we can the optimal cell type and best method for human translation so that we can move ahead rationally and, with some luck, successfully."

    While neural stem cell therapies are already advancing to clinical trials, this research raises cautionary notes about moving to human therapy too quickly, said Tuszynski.
    In a past study, you showed that rat neuronal stem cells could regenerate across an injury site, form connections, or synapses, with other neurons and even improve limb movement after damage to the spinal cord. But in this study, using human neuronal stem cells, you didn't see any improvement in the rats ability to move. Why do you think that is?

    TUSZYNSKI: First, these grafts developed rifts in their centers consisting of collagen that essentially separated the grafts into two compartments. Without communication across the gap, one would not expect functional improvement. We are working to eliminate these rifts. Interestingly, they do not form when we place grafts in larger animal models of spinal cord injury or in rats when we use a contusion model of injury (instead of an open transection lesion). Second, hand movement is a more complex function than simple locomotion, require integration of inputs from many sources. So it might be more difficult to detect improvement in hand function. Third, these human cells may have been maturing more slowly than the rat cells used in our previous study, and we might need to wait longer before functional improvement based on human cells occurs. Fourth, the human axons extending out of the injury site were not myelinated, and this might have prohibited functional recovery. These are all possibilities that we are testing.

    What's the next step in this research?

    TUSZYNSKI: A very important step is to take the cells to longer time periods of survival, to determine the rate at which human cells are maturing. A second step is scaling up the technology to larger animal models. A third step is eliminating the collagenous rifts to allow relays to potentially form across the injury site.

    From the basic neuroscience perspective, these cells in and of themselves are fascinating subjects of study that can teach us a great deal. Along these lines, we are examining the transcriptional state of the cells as they actively extend axons, and whether molecular switches for axon growth can be identified. If so, we might be able to turn on these switches in adult neurons to improve axon regeneration. There are many, many other basic and applied questions that emerge from this work.

    LINK:

  7. #7
    Member Peders's Avatar
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    More great work! Far to go, but have to start somewhere.

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