Now, researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s Institute for Regenerative Medicine report on the regenerative process that enables rats to re-grow their bladders within eight weeks.
In PLOS ONE, a peer-reviewed, online publication, the scientists characterize this unique model of bladder regeneration with the goal of applying what they learn to human patients.
“A better understanding of the regenerative process at the molecular and cellular level is a key to more rapid progress in applying regenerative medicine to help patients,” said George Christ, Ph.D., senior researcher and professor of regenerative medicine at Wake Forest Baptist.
In a previous study by Christ’s team, research in rats showed that when about 75 percent of the animals’ bladders were removed, they were able to regenerate a complete functional bladder within eight weeks. The current study focused on how the regeneration occurs.
“There is very little data on the mechanisms involved in organ regeneration in mammals,” said Christ. “To our knowledge, bladder regeneration holds a unique position – there is no other mammalian organ capable of this type of regeneration.”
The ability of the liver to grow in size when lobes are removed is sometimes referred to as regeneration, but this is a misnomer, said co-author Bryon Petersen, Ph.D., who was a professor of regenerative medicine at Wake Forest Baptist during the period the research occurred. Instead, through a proliferation of cells, the remaining tissue grows to compensate for the lost size. In contrast, the hallmark of true regeneration is following nature’s “pattern” to exactly duplicate size, form and function, Petersen said.
“If we can understand the bladder’s regenerative process, the hope is that we can prompt the regeneration of other organs and tissues where structure is important – from the intestine and spinal cord to the heart,” said Petersen.
The current study showed that the animals’ bodies responded to injury by increasing the rate at which certain cells divided and grew. The most notable proliferative response occurred initially in the urothelium, the layer of tissue that lines the bladder.
As the proliferative activity in the bladder lining waned, it continued elsewhere: in the fibrous band (lamina propria) that separates the bladder lining from the bladder muscles and in the bladder muscle itself.
The researchers have several theories about how the process works, said Christ. One possibility is that cells in the bladder lining transition and become a type of stem cell that can proliferate throughout the bladder. Other theories are that cells in the bladder lining signal other cells to replicate and that injury prompts stem cells to arrive through the blood stream to repair the bladder damage.
In future studies, the scientists will work to identify the exact regenerative process and will expand the work into mice. The ability to breed mice that lack specific genes will enable the team to explore how genes and proteins may affect the regenerative process and possibly help identify therapies to prompt regeneration.
The research was supported by the National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases under award number R21DK081832.
Co-researchers were Charles C. Peyton, M.D., lead author, David Burmeister, Ph.D., and Karl-Erik Andersson, M.D., Ph.D., of Wake Forest Baptist. Peterson is now at the University of Florida and an adjunct professor at Wake Forest Baptist.
Media Contacts: Karen Richardson, email@example.com, (336) 716-4453 or Main Number (336) 716-4587.About the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Karen Richardson | Newswise Science News
Bacteria as pacemaker for the intestine
22.11.2017 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
Researchers identify how bacterium survives in oxygen-poor environments
22.11.2017 | Columbia University
The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
22.11.2017 | Business and Finance
22.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
22.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy