Paul R. Sanberg, DSc, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Neurosurgery and Director of the Center for Aging and Brain Repair at USF Health, wrote the commentary “Neural Stem Cells for Parkinson’s Disease: To Protect and Repair” published July 9 in the “Early Edition” online version of journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). The expert commentary (see http://www.pnas.org/cgi/reprint/0704704104v1) is a companion piece to the study conducted by Gene Redmond and colleagues at Yale and Harvard Universities and the Burnham Institute.
That NIH-funded study showed that only a small number of stem cells turned into dopamine-producing cells – not enough to improve the primates’ function by replacing missing neurons. Instead, some stem cells turned into astrocytes, a supportive brain cell that produces neuron-nourishing chemicals. The researchers also identified in the brains of the primate recipients a significant amount of dopamine-producing neurons that were not derived from stem cells. The results suggest that stem cells may actually trigger the brain’s own self-repair mechanisms by pumping out molecules that boost nerve survival and blood vessel development and decrease neural degeneration.
“We at the Center for Aging and Brain Repair at USF Health have been arguing, for some time now, that stem cells are important for brain repair because they provide growth factors and because they send signals to the brain to help it repair itself,” Dr. Sanberg said. “This study in primates showed the same effects — that the stem cells are there to act as facilators of repair versus the original hypothesis that stem cells are transplanted to merely replace an injured cell.”
Dr. Sanberg said the study has relevance to all audiences. “This was one of the first studies to look at stem cells in primates with Parkinson’s disease. It’s the first step in translating that research,” he said. “We hear about new sources of stem cells monthly, but how we take those cells and treat disease is going to be a significant amount of translational work. This is one of the first studies that starts that process — looking at primates before going into people with Parkinson’s disease.”
While the transplanted cells appeared not to form tumors following transplant, Dr. Sanberg said the translational research in primates raises questions that need to be addressed before moving to human trials, including determining the most effective cell dosing and brain sites to target. “Pending further preclinical studies,” he writes in the commentary, “the results so far from the current study are supportive for developing a safe and effective stem cell treatment for Parkinson’s disease.”
Dr. Sanberg’s commentary and the study it highlights will also be published in the magazine edition of PNAS, a prestigious publication with a global audience. PNAS has been a resource for multidisciplinary research since 1914. Its online edition, where Dr. Sanberg’s commentary appears this week, receives nearly 6 million e-visitor “hits” per month. Content includes research reports, commentaries, reviews, perspectives, colloquium papers, and actions of the Academy. Coverage in PNAS spans the biological, physical, and social sciences.
Dr. Sanberg also commented on the PNAS study of neural stem cells in Parkinson’s primates for an article appearing June 11 in Nature.com.
- USF Health -
USF Health is a partnership of the University of South Florida’s colleges of medicine, nursing, and public health; the schools of biomedical sciences and physical therapy & rehabilitation sciences; and the USF Physicians Group. It is a partnership dedicated to the promise of creating a new model of health and health care. One of the nation’s top 63 public research universities as designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, USF received more than $310 million in research contracts and grants last year.
Anne DeLotto Baier | EurekAlert!
Antarctic Ice Sheet mass loss has increased
14.06.2018 | Technische Universität Dresden
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.
Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...
Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...
Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.
Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...
The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.
Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.
An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.
Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...
13.06.2018 | Event News
08.06.2018 | Event News
05.06.2018 | Event News
22.06.2018 | Materials Sciences
22.06.2018 | Earth Sciences
22.06.2018 | Life Sciences