Neural stem cells grown from blood could revolutionize medicine

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Doctors could soon be able to grow new brain cells, which would help treat people with strokes or other neurological conditions, using just a small blood sample.

Scientists from Heidelberg University Hospital in Germany and the University of Innsbruck in Austria figured out how to reprogram mature human blood cells into neural stem cells. Scientists have reprogrammed stem cells before, but these new cells are the first ones that can continue to multiply and propagate in the lab thanks to specific genetic tweaks, according to research published Thursday in the journal Stem Cell.

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Scientists discover mechanism that could regrow damaged nerves

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The discovery could lead to developing a drug that can trigger regrowth of damaged nerves.

Spinal cord injuries are currently irreparable. Most people who suffer from such an injury never fully recover, and many end up with partial or even full paralysis. Although we’ve made great strides in understanding how spinal injuries damage nerves and how we might fix the spinal cord in the future, and even how those patients can cope in the meantime, we still don’t know how to repair the nerves themselves when such an injury occurs. However, scientists at Imperial College London have recently discovered a mechanism that allows them to repair, and even regenerate, nerves in the central nervous system after a spinal cord injury.

 

 

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Sleeping Pills Are Linked to an Increased Risk of Dying

sleeping pills

Risk of dying increases by a third when taking sleeping pills.

Research has found that people taking the drugs are at least a third more likely to die during the 13-year study than those not on them.  One suggested reason for the effect is that sleeping pills and anti-anxiety drugs affect people’s response times, alertness, and co-ordination.

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