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Articles Tagged: neuroscience

Half of spinal cord injury patients may still have some connectivity, Australian study finds

Published: January 31, 2018 | Category: News | Spinal Cord Injury: ,

The sensation James Stanley misses most is the squidgey feeling of wet sand between his toes. Sometimes it’s dangling his legs into cool water, and the feeling of soft grass under his feet.

“They’re very simple things, but when you haven’t felt them for seven years I just think it would be amazing to feel them again,” the 25-year-old said.

A rare surfing injury called surfer’s myelopathy paralysed Mr Stanley from the navel down when he was 19 years old. As he pushed up on his surfboard his spine hyper-extended, triggering a swelling and spinal cord blockage at his T10 vertebra. Continue Reading »

Central Michigan University graduate student conducts research for spinal cord injuries

Published: December 3, 2017 | Category: News

Hartland graduate student Andrew Stewart has dedicated nearly five years of his life to finding a cure for spinal cord injuries.

Stewart chose spinal cord injury research in 2009 after his brother was involved in an accident that damaged his spinal cord and left him paralyzed in a wheelchair.

“He had fallen from a third-story balcony onto a concrete slab,” Stewart said. “That’s what moved me to pursue a career in research to find a cure for spinal cord injuries.” Continue Reading »

New Neural Network Can Restore Diaphragm Function after Spinal Cord Injury

Published: October 17, 2017 | Category: News | Spinal Cord Injury:

Bottom Line: A team of neuroscientists has uncovered a neural network that can restore diaphragm function after spinal cord injury. The network allows the diaphragm to contract without input from the brain, which could help paralyzed spinal cord injury patients breathe without a respirator.

Journal in Which the Study was Published: Cell Reports

Author: Jared Cregg, Neurosciences graduate student at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio is first author on the study. Continue Reading »

Using donor stem cells to treat spinal cord injury

Published: August 28, 2017 | Category: News

Immune cells populating spinal cord after injury affect ability of stem cells to promote recovery

A new study in mice published in The Journal of Neuroscience details a potential therapeutic strategy that uses stem cells to promote recovery of motor activity after spinal cord injury.

The transplantation of neural stem cells could help promote repair of an injured spinal cord, but the interaction between donor cells and the resident cells that are part of the body’s immune response to injury is not well understood. Continue Reading »

Drug aims to help treat spinal cord injuries

Published: July 25, 2017 | Category: News

Researchers at ReNetX Bio are hoping a new name, the potential for a new influx of cash on the horizon and a new chief executive officer are the winning combination needed to bring its lead drug candidate to market.

ReNetX Bio is looking to guide its drug candidate, Nogo Trap, through its first round of clinical trials. Company officials say Nogo Trap is designed to help patients with chronic spinal cord injury. Continue Reading »

Dr. Monica Perez’s Team Shows First Evidence of Using Cortical Targets to Improve Motor Function

Published: June 13, 2017 | Category: News

Monica A. Perez, P.T., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Neurological Surgery and The Miami Project, and colleagues, recently published A novel cortical target to enhance hand motor output in humans with spinal cord injury in the June issue of Brain that provides the first evidence that cortical targets could represent a novel therapeutic site for improving motor function in humans paralyzed by spinal cord injury (SCI).

A main goal of rehabilitation strategies in humans with SCI is to strengthen transmission in spared neural networks. Although neuromodulatory strategies have targeted different sites within the central nervous system to restore motor function following SCI, the role of cortical targets remains poorly understood. Continue Reading »

New discovery in spinal cord injuries shows oxygen can improve blood flow and restore motor function: U of A study

Published: May 1, 2017 | Category: News

Neuroscientists at University of AlbertaA new discovery at the University of Alberta will fundamentally alter how we view spinal cord function and rehabilitation after spinal cord injuries (SCI). Neuroscientists found that spinal blood flow in rats was unexpectedly compromised long after a spinal cord injury (chronically ischemia), and that improving blood flow or simply inhaling more oxygen produces lasting improvements in cord oxygenation and motor functions, such as walking.

Previous work had shown that while blood flow was temporarily disrupted at the injury site, it resumed rapidly, and it was more or less assumed that the blood flow was normal below the injury. This turns out to be wrong. Continue Reading »

Ten Questions with Dr. Peter Grahn

Published: April 18, 2017 | Category: Answers | Spinal Cord Injury:

Dr Peter GrahnIn the summer of 2005 just graduated Willmar Cardinal basketball player Pete Grahn was enjoying a swim in Green Lake with friends when his life changed for good.

It was an exciting time for Pete, he had graduated from Willmar senior high and was headed for Minnesota State- Moorhead to play college basketball and get his degree in biology. Pete was a smooth shooting forward who was very athletic and according to his coach Steve Grove “really worked hard to make himself into great Willmar Cardinal. He had a sweet left hand jump shot, loved to shoot the three’s.” Continue Reading »

An old drug with new potential: WWII chemical-weapon antidote shows early promise as treatment for spinal cord injuries

Published: March 28, 2017 | Category: News

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A drug developed during World War II as an antidote for a chemical warfare agent has been found to be effective at suppressing a neurotoxin that worsens the pain and severity of spinal cord injuries, suggesting a new tool to treat the injuries.

The neurotoxin, called acrolein, is produced within the body after nerve cells are damaged, increasing pain and triggering a cascade of biochemical events thought to worsen the injury’s severity. Continue Reading »

The future of stem cells: tackling hype versus hope

Published: January 28, 2017 | Category: News

Professor Alan Mackay-SimControversy surrounds the link between Australian of the Year Alan Mackay Sim’s research and a Polish team who restored mobility for a paraplegic man.

For many people suffering from disabling conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, spinal injury and paralysis, multiple sclerosis, macular degeneration, heart disease, renal failure and even cancer, announcements in the press around breakthroughs in stem cell research undoubtedly bring hope.

The challenge remains how to accurately communicate what is genuinely possible in terms of therapies and what we scientists hope might be possible but do not yet have strong evidence for. Continue Reading »