HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Polymers promote nerve regeneration

AMES, Iowa Using microscale channels cut in an ultrathin biodegradable polymer, a researcher at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory is working to regrow nerve cells. The technique, which may one day allow the paralyzed to walk and the blind to see, has been proven to work for peripheral nerve regeneration in laboratory rats.

Nerve cells are unlike most other biological tissue. When a nerve is severed, the part of the neuron "downstream" of the injury typically dies off. And neurons in the human body can be several feet long. Grafting, which works well for other tissue such as skin, isn't the best option because of loss of nerve function where the donor tissue is removed and the difficulty in getting the nerve cells to line up and reconnect.

"Nerve cells aren't able to easily bridge gaps of more than one centimeter," says Surya Mallapragada, an Ames Laboratory associate in Materials Chemistry and a chemical engineering professor at Iowa State University. "Peripheral nervous system (PNS) axons the part of the nerve cell which carries the impulses normally have a connective tissue sheath of myelin guide their growth, and without that guidance, they aren't able grow productively."

Since the nervous system carries electrical impulses, it helps to think of nerve cells in terms of electrical wiring. Bundles of nerves are like an electrical cable with multiple wires. When a nerve "cable" is cut and cells die, it would be as though the copper wire downstream of the damage disappeared, leaving only the empty plastic insulation tubes. In order for new copper wiring to push out across the gap and fill in the empty insulation tubes, you'd need a way to guide the wires into the empty insulation. And that's where Mallapragada's research comes in.

By working on a cellular scale, she has developed a way to help guide neurons so they grow in the right direction. Starting with biodegradable polymer films only a few hundred microns thick (
'"/>

Contact: Surya Mallapragada
suryakm@iastate.edu
515-294-7407
DOE/Ames Laboratory
12-Feb-2003


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Reversible Process For Forming Supramolecular Polymers Could Be The Basis Of Fibers, Molecular Transport Mechanisms
2. Model Polymers Reveal New Clues to Protein Folding
3. Dr. Brenda Milner promoted to Companion of the Order of Canada
4. Increased atmospheric carbon dioxide promotes algal growth
5. Symbiotic fungi promote invasion into diverse plant communities (Rudgers et al.)
6. Symbiotic fungi promote invasion into diverse plant communities (Rudgers et al.)
7. Estrogen promotes gender differences in brains response to stress
8. Cell death promotes learning growth
9. Grant promotes marine ornamental fish aquaculture
10. Study suggests ovarian cancer cells can alter surroundings to promote chemotherapy resistance
11. Body hormone ghrelin, a food intake and weight gain influence, is found to promote sleep

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Polymers promote nerve regeneration

(Date:10/15/2014)... of Life, is a non-traditional biophysics textbook and it ... is a journey of discovery into biological systems and ... biological regulation. It is about how our genes make ... the billions of cells in an organism. It quantifies ... principles, which can be found on both large and ...
(Date:10/15/2014)... NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD and NXTDW) ... growing mobile commerce market releases photos and video of the recent ... October 13 th . Gino Pereira , ... angel investor Mr. Chad A. Verdi rang the bell.  ... his investors and employees "for their work and dedication in bringing ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... published in Cancer Research shows SIRT6—a protein ... cancers—can promote the development of skin cancers by turning ... of sun-damaged skin cells. , Previously considered protective, SIRT6 ... sirtuins that help regulate genomic stability and prevent some ... repair DNA damage, which can lead to cancer. This ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):New book about life as seen from physics 2Photo Release: NXT-ID Inc. Rings Opening Bell of the NASDAQ Stock Market October 13th 2Photo Release: NXT-ID Inc. Rings Opening Bell of the NASDAQ Stock Market October 13th 3Two-faced gene: SIRT6 prevents some cancers but promotes sun-induced skin cancer 2
(Date:10/22/2014)... , Oct. 22, 2014 Research ... the "Global DNA Diagnostics Market (Product types, ... Share, Global Trends, Company Profiles, Demand, Insights, Analysis, ... 2020" report to their offering. ... (products, applications, techniques, end users and Geography) Global ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... Shimadzu Scientific Instruments introduces its Open Solution ... pain management and clinical markets. The software increases the ... allowing users to highlight and review results that are ... analysts to filter results by group or based on ... the need to sift through analytes of no interest. ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... October 22, 2014 Grace Century, a ... healthcare projects, announces the addition of Dr. Yousef ... its advisory team. Dr. Siddiqui will provide further healthcare ... A graduate of University College Medical School ... in medicine in 2001. With further certification as a ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... VANCOUVER , Oct. 22, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - iCo ... ICOTF), today announced next steps for its Oral ... findings from its in vitro work ... therapy.  iCo now plans to complete pre clinical ... an initial Phase 1A clinical trial, utilizing approximately ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Global DNA Diagnostics Market (Product types, Application, Technology, End User and Geography) - Forecast to 2020 2Global DNA Diagnostics Market (Product types, Application, Technology, End User and Geography) - Forecast to 2020 3Shimadzu Releases QuantAnalytics Open Access LCMS Software Package for Clinical Applications 2Dr. Yousef Siddiqui joins the Grace Century Advisory Team 2iCo Therapeutics Announces Advancement of Oral Amphotericin B Program 2iCo Therapeutics Announces Advancement of Oral Amphotericin B Program 3
Cached News: