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NYSCF scientists make living brain cells from Alzheimer’s patients biobanked brain tissue

January 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Scientists at The New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF) Research Institute, working in collaboration with scientists from Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC), for the first time generated induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells lines from non-cryoprotected brain tissue of patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

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Human stem cells predict efficacy of Alzheimer drugs

December 7, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Why do certain Alzheimer medications work in animal models but not in clinical trials in humans? A research team from the University of Bonn and the biomedical enterprise LIFE & BRAIN GmbH has been able to show that results of established test methods with animal models and cell lines used up until now can hardly be translated to the processes in the human brain. Drug testing should therefore be conducted with human nerve cells, conclude the scientists. The results are published by Cell Press in the journal “Stem Cell Reports“.

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Understanding a protein’s role in familial Alzheimer’s disease

November 15, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have used genetic engineering of human induced pluripotent stem cells to specifically and precisely parse the roles of a key mutated protein in causing familial Alzheimer’s disease (AD), discovering that simple loss-of-function does not contribute to the inherited form of the neurodegenerative disorder.

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Lou Gehrig’s disease: From patient stem cells to potential treatment strategy in one study

October 25, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Although the technology has existed for just a few years, scientists increasingly use “disease in a dish” models to study genetic, molecular and cellular defects. But a team of doctors and scientists led by researchers at the Cedars-Sinai Regenerative Medicine Institute went further in a study of Lou Gehrig’s disease, a fatal disorder that attacks muscle-controlling nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.

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Study supports intracerebral stem cell injections to prevent/reduce post-stroke cognitive deficits

August 26, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Cognitive deficits following ischemic stroke are common and debilitating, even in the relatively few patients who are treated expeditiously so that clots are removed or dissolved rapidly and cerebral blood flow restored. A new study in Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience demonstrates that intracerebral injection of bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BSCs) reduces cognitive deficits produced by temporary occlusion of cerebral blood vessels in a rat model of stroke, suggesting that BSCs may offer a new approach for reducing post-stroke cognitive dysfunction.

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Acellular nerve graft and stem cells for repair of long-segment sciatic nerve defects

August 16, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Peripheral nerve defects are very common in clinical surgery. For repair of short-segment nerve defects, freeing nerve, nerve diversions or joint flexion can be used to directly connect the two stumps of nerves by using microsurgical techniques; while for long-segment nerve defects, we require a bridging material to bridge defected nerves. Nerve allograft is the most similar to autologous nerve in structure with rich sources. Antigenicity-free nerve allografts which retain the natural three-dimensional structure will become ideal scaffold materials for tissue-engineered nerves. Dr. Shuncai Zhang and colleagues from the First Affiliated Hospital of Liaoning Medical University constructed tissue-engineered nerves with acellular nerve allografts in Sprague- Dawley rats, which were prepared using chemical detergents-enzymatic digestion and mechanical methods, in combination with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells of Wistar rats cultured in vitro, to repair 15 mm sciatic bone defects in Wistar rats. In this study, electrophysiological detection results showed that the conduction velocity of regenerated nerve after repair with tissue-engineered nerves was similar to that after autologous nerve grafting. Immunohistochemical staining revealed that motor endplates with acetylcholinesterase-positive nerve fibers were orderly arranged in the middle and superior parts of the gastrocnemius muscle; regenerated nerve tracts and sprouted branches were connected with motor endplates. The wet weight ratio of the tibialis anterior muscle at the affected contralateral hind limb was similar to the sciatic nerve after repair with autologous nerve grafts. The hind limb motor function at the affected side was significantly improved. These findings, published in the Neural Regeneration Research (Vol. 8, No. 21, 2013), indicate that acellular nerve allografts combined with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell bridging could be used for repair of long-segment sciatic nerve defects.

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Tumor suppressor is needed for stem cells to mature into neurons

August 16, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

CHD5 has previously been proposed as a tumour suppressor, acting as a brake that prevents healthy cells from developing into cancer cells. But the part played by the protein in healthy tissue, and whether this role is important for its ability to counter tumour growth, has remained largely uncharted. Working with colleagues at Trinity College in Dublin and BRIC in Copenhagen, researchers at Karolinska Institutet have revealed its function in normal nervous system development and as a tumour suppressor.

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Epilepsy in a dish: Stem cell research reveals clues to disease’s origins and possible treatment

July 25, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

This diagram shows the process by which scientists can take skin cells from patients with epilepsy, convert them to stem cells, and then create neurons (brain nerve cells) from them. The induced neurons contain the same genetic mutation(s) carried by the patients. Credit: Parent lab, University of Michigan Medical School

The findings, reported by a team of scientists from the University of Michigan Medical School and colleagues, use a technique that could be called “epilepsy in a dish”.

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New stem cell gene therapy gives hope to prevent inherited neurological disease

July 24, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Scientists from The University of Manchester have used stem cell gene therapy to treat a fatal genetic brain disease in mice for the first time.

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Newly identified bone marrow stem cells reveal markers for ALS

July 10, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a devastating motor neuron disease that rapidly atrophies the muscles, leading to complete paralysis. Despite its high profile — established when it afflicted the New York Yankees’ Lou Gehrig — ALS remains a disease that scientists are unable to predict, prevent, or cure.

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