Cell therapy promotes axon remyelination in a mouse model
News Aug 18, 2016
Demyelinating diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and leukodystrophy, are characterized by damage to the protective myelin sheath that surrounds the axons of neurons. This demyelination can be caused by an autoimmune response or impaired myelin production by oligodendrocytes.
See Also: Researchers present new view of myelin
A new report in JCI Insight from Arjun Saha and colleagues at Duke University demonstrates that a cell therapy product called DUOC-01 can accelerate remyelination of axons in mice treated with a demyelinating chemical agent.
DUOC-01 cells, which are derived from banked umbilical cord blood, were transplanted into mice following toxic demyelination. DUOC-01 treatment resulted in faster remyelination and promoted the differentiation of oligodendrocyte progenitor cells.
These results suggest that a cord blood-derived cell product can promote neuronal repair and remyelination. Future clinical studies will be needed to determine if DUOC-01 cell therapy benefits patients with demyelinating diseases.
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Saha A et al. A cord blood monocyte–derived cell therapy product accelerates brain remyelination. JCI Insight, Published Online August 18 2016. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.86667
Neurons in the human brain receive electrical signals from thousands of other cells, and long neural extensions called dendrites play a critical role in incorporating all of that information. Using hard-to-obtain samples of human brain tissue, MIT neuroscientists have now discovered that human dendrites have different electrical properties from those of other species.