Navigation Links
New type of spinal cord stem cell discovered
Date:9/15/2011

A group led by a University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health scientist has discovered a type of spinal cord cell that could function as a stem cell, with the ability to regenerate portions of the central nervous system in people with spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease).

The radial glial cells, which are marked by long projections that can forge through brain tissue, had never previously been found in an adult spinal cord. Radial glia, which are instrumental in building the brain and spinal cord during an organism's embryonic phase, vastly outnumber other potential stem cells in the spinal cord and are much more accessible. Their findings were published online this week in PLoS One.

Stem cells have the capability of dividing into more specialized types of cells, either during the growth of an organism or to help replenish other cells. Scientists consider stem cells a promising way to replace injured or diseased organs and tissues.

The search for spinal stem cells of the central nervous system has until now focused deep in the spinal cord. Jane Roskams, a professor in the UBC Dept. of Zoology, broadened the search by using genetic profiles of nervous system stem cells that were developed and made publicly accessible by the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle.

Roskams, collaborating with researchers at the Allen Institute, McGill University and Yale University, found cells with similar genes radial glial cells along the outside edge of spinal cords of mice.

"That is exactly where you would want these cells to be if you want to activate them with drugs while minimizing secondary damage," says Roskams, a member ICORD (International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries) and the Brain Research Center, both partnerships of UBC and the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute.

Roskams' team also found that radial glial cells in the spinal cord share a unique set of genes with other neural stem cells. Several of these when mutated can lead to human diseases, including some that target the nervous system. That discovery opens new possibilities for potential gene therapy treatments that would replace mutated, dysfunctional spinal cord cells with healthier ones produced by the radial glial cells.

"These long strands of radial glial cells amount to a potentially promising repair network that is perfectly situated to help people recover from spinal cord injuries or spinal disorders," Roskams says. "For some reason, they aren't re-activated very effectively in adulthood. The key is to find a way of stimulating them so they reprise their role of generating new neural cells when needed."


'/>"/>

Contact: Brian Kladko
brian.kladko@ubc.ca
604-822-2234
University of British Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Intraspinal implant of mesenchymal stem cells may not heal the demyelinated spinal cord
2. Cytori reports benefit of adipose-derived regenerative cells in spinal disc model
3. Transplanted fat cells restore function after spinal cord injury
4. Genes identified that are linked to spinal disc degeneration
5. Multiple route bone marrow stem cell injections show promise to treat spinal cord injury
6. ISU researchers find possible treatment for spinal muscular atrophy
7. Barrow researcher finds natural hydrogel helps heal spinal cord
8. Antioxidant controls spinal cord development
9. UCLA scientists make paralyzed rats walk again after spinal-cord injury
10. Researchers find ways to encourage spinal cord regeneration after injury
11. Findings show nanomedicine promising for treating spinal cord injuries
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/6/2017)... -- Forecasts by Product Type (EAC), Biometrics, ... (Transportation & Logistics, Government & Public Sector, Utilities / ... Facility, Nuclear Power), Industrial, Retail, Business Organisation (BFSI), Hospitality ... looking for a definitive report on the $27.9bn Access ... ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... April 4, 2017 KEY FINDINGS ... expand at a CAGR of 25.76% during the forecast ... the primary factor for the growth of the stem ... https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4807905/ MARKET INSIGHTS The global stem cell ... application, and geography. The stem cell market of the ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... LOS ANGELES , March 30, 2017  On ... Hack the Genome hackathon at ... This exciting two-day competition will focus on developing health ... experience. Hack the Genome is ... has been tremendous. The world,s largest companies in the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... 16, 2017 , ... While art and science are often thought of as ... might think. A Mesh Is Also a Snare, a group exhibition presented by ... Esther Klein Gallery (EKG) on August 17 and run through September 30. An opening ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... Aug. 15, 2017 After spending the past two years ... crowdsourced data collection, GeneFo now offers this platform to healthcare stakeholders ... amplifying support, adherence, and data collection vis a vis their members, ... the successful launch of this offer. ... GeneFo ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... August 15, 2017 , ... Kenall, a leader in sealed ... stay tightly sealed and perform efficiently for years. The downlights are ideal for ... aren't enough, such as: hospitals; behavioral health facilities; cleanrooms; containment areas; food and ...
(Date:8/14/2017)... ... August 14, 2017 , ... Opal ... using USB or PCI Express, announced the release of SYZYGY™, a new open ... satisfy the need for a compact, low cost, low pin-count, high-performance connectivity solution ...
Breaking Biology Technology: