Tarry for the Nonce

November 30, 2005

What the Nose Knows

Filed under: News — lmwalker @ 2:00 pm

Nose cells are quite remarkable:

At least ten operations will be carried out to test in humans a technique pioneered in animals by the neuroscientist Geoffrey Raisman, who heads the spinal repair unit of University College, London. He discovered 20 years ago that cells from the lining of the nose constantly regenerate themselves. Professor Raisman’s team believes that if those cells were implanted at the site of the damage they would build a bridge across the break, allowing the nerve fibres to knit back together . . .

The first operations will not enable someone as badly hurt as [Christopher] Reeve was to walk again, but they could heal the common motorbike injury sustained when the nerves in the arm are pulled out of the spinal cord. Until now, such injuries have been inoperable . . .

Studies in animals have established that the cell implants can restore nerve functions. Rats with severed nerves have regained functions of a forepaw. But the first human study, which tests the safety of the procedure, will be limited to patients with one very specific and similar injury to ensure the results are clear . . .

If successful, with refinement and research the procedure could be tried on people in a wheelchair. It also has the potential to heal other nerve injuries, such as those caused by stroke, blindness and deafness.

Best of all, the patient is being healed with their own body (i.e. no fear of rejection, etc.)


1 Comment

  1. Best of all, the patient is being healed with their own body (i.e. no fear of rejection, etc.)

    Hmm…. should I really venture down the fear of rejection avenue?

    Comment by Andrew P. — November 30, 2005 @ 5:16 pm

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