Non-invasive technique to transplant cells into the nervous system

SPINAL CORD INJURY RESEARCH AND ADVOCACY

Dr. Sekiya Dr. Sekiya A research team led by Dr Testuji Sekiya at Kyoto University’s Graduate School of Medicine has discovered a new, non-invasive technique to transplant cells into the nervous system. They show that the “glial scar”, commonly thought to be an obstacle to regeneration, can provide critical cues to the integration of donor cells.

Patients suffering from spinal cord injury and from neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis have high hopes for cell transplantation therapy. However, survival and integration of transplanted cells is often poor and thought to be inhibited by scar tissue that is produced by non-neuronal supporting cells called glial cells. Thus the glial scar is believed to be a major barrier to successful cell transplantation to the nervous system. The current practice is to deliver cells directly into nerve tissue through a fine tube, the idea being to place cells as close as…

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