Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Dental pulp cells may hold key to treatment of Parkinson’s disease

05.05.2004


Cells derived from the inside of a tooth might someday prove an effective way to treat the brains of people suffering from Parkinson’s disease



A study in the May 1 issue of the European Journal of Neuroscience shows dental pulp cells provide great support for nerve cells lost in Parkinson’s disease and could be transplanted directly into the affected parts of the brain. The study’s lead author is Christopher Nosrat, an assistant professor of biological and materials sciences at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry.

This is not the first test of stem cells as a therapy for Parkinson’s disease-type illnesses, known as neurodegenerative diseases, but Nosrat noted that it is the first to use post-natal stem cells grown from more readily available tooth pulp in the nervous system.


Using dental pulp has other advantages besides its availability, Nosrat said. The cells produce a host of beneficial "neurotrophic" factors, which promote nerve cell survival.

Parkinson’s disease is characterized by symptoms including tremors of the hands, arms or legs, rigidity of the body and difficulty balancing while standing or walking. Parkinson’s affects nerve cells in the part of the brain called the basal ganglia, which is responsible for control of voluntary movement. An estimated 1 million Americans suffer from Parkinson’s disease, for which there is no cure.

Nosrat’s study involved evaluating the potential of injecting tooth cells into brain cells as a possible cell-based therapy for Parkinson’s. He was testing whether the tooth cells could provide neurotrophic factors to support dying nerve cells and replace dead cells.

Nosrat also has studied dental pulp stem cells as a treatment for spinal cord injuries and said applying that knowledge to treatment of neurodegenerative disease was the next logical step.

He used the same general approach for this Parkinson’s study: researchers extract a tooth and draw cells from the center of the tooth, then culture them in a Petri dish to increase the number of the cells. The cell mixture then contains neuronal precursor cells and cells that produce beneficial neurotrophic factors.

Nosrat emphasized that there is much work to be done before human patients might find relief from Parkinson’s symptoms as a result of this therapy. It is still many years from being tested in people as a possible treatment or cure for neurological disorders.

Previous studies have used other sources for stem cells, and in animal and human studies, most of those cells die when grafted into the brain. Nosrat believes cells drawn from dental pulp are more robust because they also produce the neurotrophic factors, which promote nerve cell survival. Nosrat hopes that by refining the delivery method---by focusing the treatment much more specifically on affected parts of the brain and the co-delivery of neurotrophic factors---he can eventually achieve success.

European Journal of Neuroscience is the official journal for the federation of European neuroscience societies: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0953-816X&site=1.

The article is titled "Dental pulp cells provide neurotrophic support for dopaminergic neurons and differentiate into neurons in vitro, implications for tissue engineering and repair in the nervous system."

Nosrat’s co-authors are his wife, Irina Nosrat, Christopher Smith and Patrick Mullally, at the U-M School of Dentistry, and Lars Olson at the Karolinksa Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden.


###
Partial funding for the study came from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, part of the National Institutes of Health, as well as from the Michigan Parkinson’s Foundation.

Colleen Newvine | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://bms.dent.umich.edu/people/nosrat.html
http://www.umich.edu/~newsinfo/Releases/2001/Sep01/r090401.html

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>