Navigation Links
Scientists discover a new way to enhance nerve growth following injury
Date:4/22/2014

New research published today out of the University of Calgary's Hotchkiss Brain Institute (HBI) uncovers a mechanism to promote growth in damaged nerve cells as a means to restore connections after injury. Dr. Doug Zochodne and his team have discovered a key molecule that directly regulates nerve cell growth in the damaged nervous system. His study was published in the prestigious journal Nature Communications, with lead authors Drs. Kim Christie and Anand Krishnan.

"We made the surprising discovery that a protein called Retinoblastoma (Rb) is present in adult neurons," explains Zochodne. "This protein appears to normally act as a brake preventing nerve growth. What we have shown is that by inactivating Rb, we can release the brake and coax nerves to grow much faster," says Zochodne, a professor in the Department of Clinical Neurosciences.

Zochodne and his team decided to look for Rb in nerve cells because of its known role in regulating cell growth elsewhere in the body.

"We know that cancer is characterized by excessive cell growth and we also know that Rb is often functioning abnormally in cancer," says Zochodne. "So if cancer is able to release this brake and increase cell growth, we thought we'd try to mimic this same action in nerve cells and encourage growth where we want it."

The researchers were able to shut down Rb for a short amount of time and did not observe any negative results, leading them to feel optimistic that this could one day be used as a safe treatment for patients suffering from nerve damage.

So far, Zochodne is only investigating this technique in the peripheral nervous system. Peripheral nerves connect the brain and spinal cord to the body and without them, there is no movement or sensation. Peripheral nerve damage can be incredibly debilitating, with patients experiencing symptoms like pain, tingling, numbness or difficulty coordinating hands, feet, arms or legs.

For example, diabetic neuropathy is more common than multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) combined. More than half of all diabetics have some form of nerve pain and currently there is no treatment to stop damage or reverse it.

Developing safe and effective therapies for conditions such as peripheral nerve disorders requires the ability to take investigations from cells in a petri dish to patients in a clinic. Zochodne and his team have been able to do that thanks in part to a preclinical facility that opened at the HBI in 2010. The Regeneration Unit in Neurobiology (RUN) was created through a partnership between the HBI, the University of Calgary and the Canada-Alberta Western Economic Partnership Agreement.

"The RUN facility has been critical for this research, says Zochodne. "It provides the resources and cutting-edge equipment that we need all in one facility. RUN has allowed us to take this idea from nerve cells, to animal models and eventually will help us investigate whether it could be a feasible treatment in humans. It's an incredible asset".


'/>"/>

Contact: Marta Cyperling
mcyperli@ucalgary.ca
403-210-3835
University of Calgary
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Scientists find key steps linking dietary fats and colon cancer tumor growth
2. Stanford scientists identify source of most cases of invasive bladder cancer
3. Scientists discover brains anti-distraction system
4. Scientists find new way to fight malaria drug resistance
5. Stanford scientists develop playbook for reverse engineering tissue
6. Scientists unlock secrets of protein produced by disease-causing fungus
7. Kessler Foundation scientists receive Biogen Idec grant to study actual reality in MS
8. Scientists discover a number of novel genetic defects which cause oesophageal cancer
9. Scientists find potential target for treating mitochondrial disorders
10. Scientists describe gut bacteria that cause sepsis in preterm infants
11. Virginia Tech scientists out for blood when it comes to stopping malaria
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... “When the Stars Lead Home”: ... the creation of published author Laura Weigel Douglas, an avid reader who lives in ... house that sometimes feels like Green Hills Adventure Camp. She couldn’t be more grateful. ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... ... What Happened in the Garden of Eden”: retells the stories of three Bible figures in ... published author, Penelope Colt, mother, trader, horse farmer, artist and a former GM journeyman. ... At six, they moved to Dayton, Ohio, where Penny graduated high school. At ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Last month, representatives from Rendina Healthcare Real ... officials to celebrate the grand opening of the 87,000 square foot medical office/ICU ... its ongoing relationship with RWJBarnabas Health, New Jersey’s largest health system. Two years ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... , ... May 24, 2017 , ... Altec ... participation in nVerge 2017 – a one-day technology conference in San Diego, CA. ... solution, which allows users to fully utilize and enhance their Sage ERP solutions by ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Dr. Manju R. Kejriwal, a leading Ohio dentist, ... or without a referral. Dr. Kejriwal understands the emotional and financial toll traditional orthodontics ... Cincinnati, OH. Patients no longer need to feel the esthetic effects of wires and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/9/2017)... , May 9, 2017  Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. ... a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development ... the Canadian Intellectual Property Office has granted Oramed ... Administration of Exenatide". The patent covers Oramed,s invention ... GLP-1 is an incretin hormone that stimulates ...
(Date:5/8/2017)... , May 8, 2017  Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. ... Communications, Inc. ("WRB"), a health care service center ... WRB specializes in relationship management programs for ... WRB will join ... commercialization support services for manufacturers, biotech firms, and other ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... , May 5, 2017  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. ... add approximately 100,000 square feet to its Welch Allyn ... 2016 its commitment to bring more than 100 new ... where Welch Allyn has maintained a significant presence for ... accommodate these new positions, a large portion of which ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: