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A therapy combining salmon fibrin injections into the spinal cord and injections of a gene inhibitor into the brain restored voluntary motor function impaired by spinal cord injury, scientists at UC Irvine's Reeve-Irvine Research Center have found.
In a study on rodents, Gail Lewandowski and Oswald Steward achieved this breakthrough by turning back the developmental clock in a molecular pathway critical to the formation of corticospinal tract nerve connections and providing a scaffold so that neuronal axons at the injury site could grow and link up again.
Results appear in the July 23 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.
The work expands on previous research at UCI. In 2010, Steward helped discover that axons flourish after the deletion of an enzyme called PTEN, which controls a molecular pathway regulating cell growth. PTEN activity is low during early development, allowing cell proliferation. PTEN subsequently turns on, inhibiting this pathway and precluding any ability to regenerate.
Two years later, a UCI team found that salmon fibrin injected into rats with spinal cord injury filled cavities at the injury site, giving axons a framework in which to reconnect and facilitate recovery. Fibrin is a stringy, insoluble protein produced by the blood clotting process and is used as a surgical glue.
"This is a major next step in our effort to identify treatments that restore functional losses suffered by those with spinal cord injury," said Steward, professor of anatomy & neurobiology and director of the Reeve-Irvine Research Center, of the current findings. "Paralysis and loss of function from spinal cord injury has been considered irreversible, but our discovery points the way toward a potential therapy to induce regeneration of nerve connections."
In their study, he and Lewandowski treated rodents with impaired hand movement due to spinal cord injury with a combination of salmon fibrin and a PTEN inhibitor called AAVshPTEN. A separate group of rodents got only AAVshPTEN.
The researchers saw that rats receiving the inhibitor alone did not exhibit improved motor function, whereas those given AAVshPTEN and salmon fibrin recovered forelimb use involving reaching and grasping.
originally posted by: rickymouse
It has been long known that eating fish can regenerate brain cells. Now this would mean it could also help regenerate spinal chord cells. They do not know exactly how it works but they do know it works. Now if it is the fibrin, I can't understand how come fibrin from other sources wouldn't also work. Now, the fibrin protein is found all over in nature, what makes this unique I wonder. S&F I'll have to spend some time trying to apply this info in my mind to see what ideas can pop up. Then I'll try to research to see if there is more info about this subject. Think spider, the spider spins webs that are elastic and fibrous. Someone not long ago got bit by one and they got unparalyzed. Is this related, could it be that fish eat sea bugs that build coral or shells with this protein. Does it congregate up the food chain?
Hmmm. seems like a pterin inhibitor may reverse diabetes in mice. But you have to wonder, if this inhibiter cancels out the antigrowth in the body, would it promote cancer growth? I guess I need more research. I am looking what foods would have this. Wouldn't it be funny if it was something found in tartar sauce, sort of like in horseradish?
H2O2 is a pterin inhibitor. Horse radish has peroxidases in it. I still can't figure if it can work.