Navigation Links
A step forward in regenerating and repairing damaged nerve cells
Date:11/21/2012

A team of IRCM researchers, led by Dr. Frdric Charron, recently uncovered a nerve cell's internal clock, used during embryonic development. The discovery was made in collaboration with Dr. Alyson Fournier's laboratory at the Montreal Neurological Institute. Published today in the prestigious scientific journal Neuron, this breakthrough could lead to the development of new tools to repair and regenerate nerve cells following injuries to the central nervous system.

Researchers in Dr. Charron's laboratory study neurons, which are the nerve cells that make up the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). They want to better understand how neurons navigate through the developing embryo to arrive at their correct destination.

"To properly form neural circuits, developing axons (long extensions of neurons that form nerves) follow external signals to reach the right targets," says Dr. Frdric Charron, Director of the Molecular Biology of Neural Development research unit at the IRCM. "We discovered that nerve cells also have an internal clock, which changes their response to external signals as they develop over time."

For this research project, IRCM scientists focused on the Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) protein, which gives cells important information for the embryo to develop properly and plays a critical role in the development of the central nervous system.

"It is known that axons follow the Shh signal during their development," explains Dr. Patricia Yam, research associate in Dr. Charron's laboratory and first author of the study. "However, axons change their behaviour once they reach this protein, and this has been a mystery for the scientific community. We found that a nerve cell's internal clock switches its response to external signals when it reaches the Shh protein, at which time it becomes repelled by the Shh signal rather than following it."

"Our findings therefore showed that more than one system is involved in directing axon pathfinding during development," adds Dr. Yam. "Not only do nerve cells respond to external signals, but they also have an internal control system. This discovery is important because it offers new possibilities for developing techniques to regenerate and repair damaged nerve cells. Along with trying to modify external factors, we can now also consider modifying elements inside a cell in order to change its behaviour."

Injuries to the central nervous system affect thousands of Canadians every year, and can lead to lifelong disabilities. Most often caused by an accident, stroke or disease, these injuries are very difficult to repair. New tools are therefore required to repair damage to the central nervous system, including techniques that could potentially regenerate nerve cells.

"The Canadian Institutes of Health Research is delighted to support research aimed at improving the lives of individuals with damage to the brain or spinal cord," says Dr. Anthony Phillips, Scientific Director of CIHR's Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction. ''Nerve cell repair and regeneration remains an important health challenge, and we believe that Dr. Charron's research findings will contribute to the solution."


'/>"/>

Contact: Julie Langelier
julie.langelier@ircm.qc.ca
514-987-5555
Institut de recherches cliniques de Montreal
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. How to make stem cells - nuclear reprogramming moves a step forward
2. CNIO participates in the ENCODE project: A stride forward in biomedical research
3. Step forward in research into new treatments for brain edema
4. Regenerating heart tissue topic of UH lecture Nov. 27
5. Potential new approach to regenerating skeletal muscle tissue
6. Stem cells can repair a damaged cornea
7. Stem cells + nanofibers = Promising nerve research
8. MRI research sheds new light on nerve fibers in the brain
9. MRI research sheds new light on nerve fibres in the brain
10. MBL scientists discover nerves control iridescence in squid’s remarkable electric skin
11. Long-distance distress signal from periphery of injured nerve cells begins with locally made protein
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/18/2016)... 18, 2016 --> ... ICT, Manned & Unmanned Vehicles, Physical infrastructure and Perimeter Surveillance ... in the border security market and the continuing migration crisis ... Europe has led visiongain to publish this ... --> defence & security companies in the ...
(Date:3/14/2016)... , Allemagne, March 14, 2016 ... http://www.apimages.com ) - --> - Renvoi : ... - --> --> ... solutions biométriques, fournit de nouveaux lecteurs d,empreintes digitales ... LF10 de DERMALOG sera utilisé pour produire des ...
(Date:3/9/2016)... YORK , March 9, 2016 This ... and future states of the RNA Sequencing (RNA Seq) ... segments such as instruments, tools and reagents, data analysis, ... Analyze various segments of the RNA-Sequencing market such as ... services Identify the main factors affecting each segment and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/6/2016)... , May 6, 2016 According to ... Molecular Diagnostic Market for Group A Streptococcus (GAS) Nucleic Acid ... Growth, Trends, and Forecast, 2015 - 2023 ", the ... streptococcus (GAS) nucleic acid (NA) test products market was valued ... expand at a CAGR of 11.6% from 2015 to 2023 ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... 05, 2016 , ... American Process, Inc. (API) announced that ... Nos. 9,322,133 and 9,322,134, to API and its affiliated companies for BioPlus® nanocellulose ... nanocellulose compositions. In addition to these patents and U.S. Patent No. 9,187,865 ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 04, 2016 , ... Proove ... to announce a strategic partnership with McGill University . The partnership is designed ... the market in order to help patients in pain. With the new agreement, researchers ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... ... in biotechnology to help treat hormonal and stress related hair loss. With patent-pending ... the hearts of key opinion leaders in the medical and salon channels nationwide. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: