Navigation Links
Stem Cells Restore Memory in Mice

Experiments point to ways to treat injury, stroke and even Alzheimer's, experts say

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 31 (HealthDay News) -- A new U.S. study involving mice suggests the brain's own stem cells may have the ability to restore memory after an injury.

These neural stem cells work by protecting existing cells and promoting neuronal connections.

In their experiments, a team at the University of California, Irvine, were able to bring the rodents' memory back to healthy levels up to three months after treatment.

The finding could open new doors for treatment of brain injury, stroke and dementia, experts say.

"This is one of the first reports that you can take a stem cell transplantation approach and restore memory," said lead researcher Mathew Blurton-Jones, a postdoctorate fellow at the university. "There is a lot of awareness that stem cells might be useful in treating diseases that cause loss of motor function, but this study shows that they might benefit memory in stroke or traumatic brain injury, and potentially Alzheimer's disease."

In the study, published in the Oct. 31 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, Blurton-Jones and his colleagues used genetically engineered mice that naturally develop brain lesions. The researchers destroyed cells in a brain area called the hippocampus. These cells are known to be vital to memory formation and it is in this region that neurons often die after injury, the researchers explained.

To test the mice's memory, Blurton-Jones's group conducted place and object recognition tests with both healthy mice and brain-injured mice.

Healthy mice remembered their surroundings about 70 percent of the time, while brain-injured mice remembered it only 40 percent of the time. For objects, healthy mice recalled objects about 80 percent of the time, but injured mice remembered them only 65 percent of the time.

The researchers then injected each mouse with about 200,000 neural stem cells.

They found that mice with brain injuries that received the stem cells now remembered their surroundings about 70 percent of the time -- the same as healthy mice. However, mice that didn't receive stem cells still had memory deficits.

The researchers also found that in healthy mice injected with stem cells, the stem cells traveled throughout the brain. In contrast, stem cells given to injured mice lingered in the hippocampus. Only about 4 percent of those stem cells became neurons, indicating that the stem cells were repairing existing cells to improve memory, rather than replacing the dead brain cells, Blurton-Jones's team noted.

The researchers are presently doing another study with mice stricken with Alzheimer's. "The initial results are promising," Blurton-Jones said. "This has a huge potential, but we have to be cautious about not rushing into the clinic too early."

One expert is optimistic about the findings.

"Putting in these stem cells could eventually help in age-related memory decline," said Dr. Paul R. Sanberg, director of the Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain Repair at the University of South Florida College of Medicine. "There is clearly a therapeutic potential to this."

Sanberg noted that for the process to work with Alzheimer's it has to work with older brains. "There is clearly therapeutic potential in humans, but there are a lot of hurdles to overcome," he said. "This is another demonstration of the potential for neural stem cells in brain disorders."

More information

For more information on memory, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Mathew Blurton-Jones, Ph.D., postdoctorate fellow, University of California, Irvine; Paul R. Sanberg, M.D., director, Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain Repair, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa; Oct. 31, 2007, Journal of Neuroscience.

Copyright©2007 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Blood Cells Capable of Regenerating Liver
2. White Cells Count Can Predict Heart Attack Death Risk
3. Action of nerve cells
4. Common Cold Found to Fight Cancer Cells
5. Integrin helps healing process in cells
6. Therapy for stopping the spread of cancer cells
7. Hydroxyurea derivatives kill colon cancer cells
8. Gene Therapy Destroys Pancreatic Cancer Cells
9. Creating brain cells from bone marrow
10. A Chinese herb kills cancer cells
11. Immune cells halt round in space
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Stem Cells Restore Memory in Mice
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... at a University of Delaware Accounting and Management of Information Systems course. Based ... for mid-market businesses. Sommer will speak at before student in the Enterprise Resource ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... continuing education course in Dallas, TX, on January 29 and 30, 2016. The ... improve the functions of their practices, to learn how to better succeed in ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... PA (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... A ... 15th annual Regional Biotech Conference, organized by the Baruch S. Blumberg Institute. , The ... 100 of the area’s life science and biotechnology leaders for the conference, which focused ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... HemoTreat™ has announced ... its hemorrhoid ointment to its website. , “Our goal is simple:” says Michael ... hemorrhoids. Adding the comparison chart and ingredient list allows our customers to quickly ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ChiliPad , Chili ... maximize recovery through quality sleep. Tim DiFrancesco, training coach for the LA Lakers, ... sleep. ChiliPad precisely regulates the surface temperature of each side of the bed ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... Nov. 30, 2015  PTS Diagnostics, the U.S.-based manufacturer ... analyzers, A1CNow ® systems, and PTS Detect™ ... of patents that will propel the company into the ... Europe . The technology is a ... those on smartphones and tablets, and uses test strip ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015 Cumberland Pharmaceuticals (CPIX), ... present live at on December 3, 2015. ... TIME: 3:15p.m. ET LINK: ... LINK: --> ... event where investors are invited to ask the company questions ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... LAKE CITY , Nov. 30, 2015 Booth ... (NYSE: VAR ) will exhibit a broader array of ... of the Radiological Society of North America ... Varian exhibit at the meeting will feature X-ray components "At ... CT tube, a line of products from Varian,s Claymount brand, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: