A spinal cord injury usually begins with a sudden, traumatic blow to the spine that fractures or dislocates vertebrae. The damage begins at the moment of injury when displaced bone fragments, disc material, or ligaments bruise or tear into spinal cord tissue. Most injuries to the spinal cord don't completely sever it. Instead, an injury is more likely to cause fractures and compression of the vertebrae, which then crush and destroy the axons, extensions of nerve cells that carry signals up and down the spinal cord between the brain and the rest of the body. An injury to the spinal cord can damage a few, many, or almost all of these axons. Some injuries will allow almost complete recovery. Others will result in complete paralysis.
Stem cells show particular promise in treating diseases for which few other effective treatments exist.
Scientists at the Francis Crick Institute have identified a group of latent stem cells that respond to injury in the central nervous system of mice. If a similar type of cell exists in humans, they could offer a new therapeutic approach to treat brain and spinal cord injuries.
In a first-of-its-kind blueprint, scientists have shown how stem cells mature into sensory interneurons, which are responsible for feelings including touch, pain, and itching.
An international team of researchers found that a gene therapy that prevents targeted nerve cell signaling substantially lower neuropathic pain with no detectable side effects.
UT Southwestern stem cell scientists find that stringent lineage tracing is crucial for studies of nerve cell regeneration. Their results, which are published in Cell, show that this tracing is far from routine in the field and suggest that earlier studies reporting "striking" regeneration results must be reexamined.
Researchers used metagenomic sequencing to identify variations in virus and bacterial populations that occur following spinal cord injury in mice.
Researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have devised a four-part small-molecule cocktail that can protect stem cells called induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from stress and maintain normal stem cell structure and function.
Nagoya University researchers have identified a gene that plays a crucial role in regenerating neurons of African clawed frog tadpoles, which has an unusually high capacity for nerve regeneration.
Imagine if surgeons could transplant healthy neurons into patients living with neurodegenerative diseases or brain and spinal cord injuries.
Spinal cord injury (SCI) often causes disability and seriously compromises quality of life. While decades of research have made significant progress in axonal regeneration after SCI, most of the interventions have not been translated into clinical therapies.
Findings from a new study among mice show a diet high in dried plum (prunes) completely prevents bone loss associated with spinal cord injury (SCI), while also restoring some of the bone lost following SCI.
Results of a clinical trial released today in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine indicate that a combination of stem cell therapy and educational intervention can significantly help children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
A team of researchers from University of Toronto Engineering and the University of Michigan has redesigned and enhanced a natural enzyme that shows promise in promoting the regrowth of nerve tissue following injury.
Two scientists are seeking answers to questions about spinal cord injuries that have long frustrated the development of effective treatments.