Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Reduced scarring helps nerves grow through spinal injuries

09.03.2004


Infusing a naturally occurring anti-scarring agent called decorin into the damaged spinal cords of rats suppresses key molecules that block nerve regeneration after spinal cord injury, said Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) researchers in a study published today in the European Journal of Neuroscience.



The researchers are the first to use decorin to suppress inflammation and scar formation in spinal cord injuries. "Scar tissue that develops at sites of injury stops the regeneration of connections in the adult central nervous system," said Dr. Stephen Davies, lead author on the study and an assistant professor of neurosurgery and neurosciences at BCM. "Infusion of decorin into spinal cord injuries prevents the formation of proteoglycan rich scar tissue by suppressing inflammation."

Misaligned scar tissue that forms at spinal cord injuries physically blocks nerve regeneration and contains molecules called chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans that inhibit nerve fiber growth. Decorin inhibits the action of pro - inflammatory molecules released in spinal cord injuries, called transforming growth factors, which are thought to promote the formation of scar tissue.


Researchers in the study infused decorin directly into the injury site in rats with a mini-pump system, which used silica cannulas 160 microns in diameter. Because the cannulas were so small, they did not contribute to the formation of scar tissue. Using a high-powered laser scanning microscope and protein chemistry to analyze tissue samples, Davies and co-workers were able to show that decorin infusion reduced inflammation, scar formation and the levels of some proteoglycans by 80-95 percent allowing nerve fibers (called axons) to grow across spinal cord injuries in just four days.

"We have found a promising new approach to control inflammation and scar formation, which will be an important part of future strategies to encourage axon regeneration and recovery after spinal cord injury," Davies said.


The work was supported by TIRR (The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research) Foundation’s Mission Connect and conducted in collaboration with scientists at Integra LifeSciences Holdings Corporation, The Burnham Institute and GTC Biotherapeutics Inc, who together developed the genetically engineered form of human decorin for use in the study.

Anissa Orr | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://research.bcm.tmc.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Collagen nanofibrils in mammalian tissues get stronger with exercise
14.12.2018 | University of Illinois College of Engineering

nachricht New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
12.12.2018 | UT Southwestern Medical Center

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: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>