Apr 12, 2017 05:52 PM EDT
Parkinson’s disease is known to have no cure or treatment. Yet, studies have found the way through the process of brain cell therapy, which might be the huge medical breakthrough in discovering the total solution for the condition.
According to NHS Choices, the study published in the journal of Nature Biotechnology seeks answers whether the lost cells due to Parkinson’s disease could be replaced with those cells commonly found in the brain. Those called glial cells found in the brain are said to be the potential substitute of those damaged cells caused by Parkinson’s.
With that being said, multiple researchers have not yet identified what causes the cells to be damaged. Hence, with the cells lost, Parkinson’s disease patients were said to lack dopamine in their brain, which led to their difficulty in moving and walking.
Fortunately, the laboratory experiment by the researchers applied their theory into mice with symptoms similar to Parkinson’s. The investigators used genetic engineering to transfer glial cells as a replacement for those lost cells.
After the mice injected were injected in their brain, they were analyzed five weeks later. The results were reported to be successful. Thus, the researchers had successfully removed some of the Parkinson’s symptoms in mice as they converted the glial cells into dopamine-producing nerve cells per Stat News.
“This is not going to happen in five years or possibly even 10, but I’m excited about the potential of this kind of cell replacement therapy,” stated James Beck, chief scientific officer of the Parkinson’s Foundation. “It could really give life back to someone with Parkinson’s disease.” Beck also stated that Parkinson’s disease patients are willing to go through a lot just to see improvements when he was asked whether would the patients would be willing to undergo brain injections.
The study was led by researchers from the Karolinska Institutet along with some from the Medical University of Vienna, Malaga University, and Stanford University. The researchers then concluded that efficacy and safety in human trials for the procedure are now considered as their next step.
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