Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Barrow scientists identify new stem cell activity in human brain

29.09.2011
Finding raises questions of how the human brain develops and evolves

Researchers at Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center have identified a new pathway of stem cell activity in the brain that represents potential targets of brain injuries affecting newborns. The recent study, which raises new questions of how the brain evolves, is published in the current issue of Nature, one of the world's most cited scientific journals.

Nader Sanai, MD, director of Barrow's Brain Tumor Research Center, led this study, which is the first developmental study of human neural stem cells in a region of the brain called the subventricular zone, the tissue structure in which brain stem cells reside. Also participating in the study were researchers from University of California San Francisco and the University of Valencia in Spain.

The findings revealed that there is a pathway of young migrating neurons targeting the prefrontal cortex of the human brain in the first few months of life. After the first year of life, the subventricular zone of the brain slows down, tapering production of new brain cells by the time a child is 18-months and then to nearly zero by age two. This revelation settles conflicting prior reports that suggested that human neural stem cell cells remain highly active into adulthood.

"In the first few months of life, we identified streams of newly-generated cells from the subventricular portion of the brain moving toward the frontal cortex," says Dr. Sanai. "The existence of this new pathway, which has no known counterpart in all other studied vertebrates, raises questions about the mechanics of how the human brain develops and has evolved."

Researchers believe this study holds important implications for the understanding of neonatal brain diseases that can cause death or devastating, life-long brain damage. These conditions include germinal matrix hemorrhages, the most common type of brain hemorrhage that occurs in infants; and perinatal hypoxic – ischaemic injuries, exposure to low oxygen and decreased blood flow that can lead to diseases such as cerebral palsy and seizure disorders.

"The first year of human life has a window of vulnerability, as well as tremendous opportunity, for the brain," says Dr. Sanai. "It's a period of incredible growth, organization, and flexibility, as fresh neural connections are created, broken, and remade. A better understanding of how things can go wrong in that critical period could ultimately improve the chances that things will go right."

Carmelle Malkovich | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.chw.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Staying in Shape
16.08.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für molekulare Zellbiologie und Genetik

nachricht Chips, light and coding moves the front line in beating bacteria
16.08.2018 | Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) Graduate University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Unraveling the nature of 'whistlers' from space in the lab

A new study sheds light on how ultralow frequency radio waves and plasmas interact

Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...

Im Focus: New interactive machine learning tool makes car designs more aerodynamic

Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.

When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...

Im Focus: Robots as 'pump attendants': TU Graz develops robot-controlled rapid charging system for e-vehicles

Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.

Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....

Im Focus: The “TRiC” to folding actin

Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.

Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...

Im Focus: Lining up surprising behaviors of superconductor with one of the world's strongest magnets

Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur

What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Within reach of the Universe

08.08.2018 | Event News

A journey through the history of microscopy – new exhibition opens at the MDC

27.07.2018 | Event News

2018 Work Research Conference

25.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Staying in Shape

16.08.2018 | Life Sciences

Diving robots find Antarctic seas exhale surprising amounts of carbon dioxide in winter

16.08.2018 | Earth Sciences

Protein droplets keep neurons at the ready and immune system in balance

16.08.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>