Brain Sci. 2018 Jun 15;8(6).

Emerging Cellular and Molecular Strategies for Enhancing Central Nervous System (CNS) Remyelination.

Abu-Rub M1, Miller RH2.

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Myelination is critical for the normal functioning of the central nervous system (CNS) in vertebrates. Conditions in which the development of myelin is perturbed result in severely compromised individuals often with shorter lifespans, while loss of myelin in the adult results in a variety of functional deficits. Although some form of spontaneous remyelination often takes place, the repair process as a whole often fails. Several lines of evidence suggest it is feasible to develop strategies that enhance the capacity of the CNS to undergo remyelination and potentially reverse functional deficits. Such strategies include cellular therapies using either neural or mesenchymal stem cells as well as molecular regulators of oligodendrocyte development and differentiation. Given the prevalence of demyelinating diseases and their effects on the quality of life for affected individuals it is imperative that effective therapies are developed. Here we discuss some of the new approaches to CNS myelin repair that hold promise for reducing the burden of diseases characterized by myelin loss.