Researchers have discovered that adult stem cells from the brain could be used to restore movement to paralysed patients. Experts say the breakthrough could lead to the creation of a spare set of matching cells which could then be used to “repair” damage to the spinal cord.
The study, conducted by researchers from the Nara Institute of Science and Technology, Japan, involved transplanting “neural stem cells” (NSCs) to mice with severe spinal cord injuries. They were then administered valproic acid, used to treat epilepsy. The acid promoted the transplanted stem cells to generate nerve cells rather than other types of brain cell. Full story