Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Milestone In The Regeneration Of Brain Cells

Date:
August 22, 2007
Source:
GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health
Summary:
Scientists are one step closer to the potential replacement of damaged brain cells after injury or disease: functional nerve cells can be generated from astroglia, a type of supportive cells in the brain by means of special regulator proteins.

Neurons (green) generated from glia cells after expression of the transcription factors Neurogenin2; blue: nuclei.
Credit: ISF

The research group of Prof. Dr. Magdalena Götz at the Institute of Stem Cell Research of the GSF – National Research Centre for Environment and Health, and the Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich, has achieved an additional step for the potential replacement of damaged brain cells after injury or disease: functional nerve cells can be generated from astroglia, a type of supportive cells in the brain by means of special regulator proteins.

The majority of cells in the human brain are not nerve cells but star-shaped glia cells, the so called “astroglia”. “Glia means “glue”, explains Götz. “As befits their name, until now these cells have been regarded merely as a kind of “putty” keeping the nerve cells together.

A couple of years ago, the research group had been already able to prove that these glia cells function as stem cells during development. This means that they are able to differentiate into functional nerve cells. However, this ability gets lost in later phases of development, so that even after an injury to the adult brain glial cells are unable to generate any more nerve cells.

In order to be able to reverse this development, the team studied what molecular switches are essential for the creation of nerve cells from glial cells during development. These regulator proteins are introduced into glial cells from the postnatal brain, which indeed respond by switching on the expression of neuronal proteins.

In his current work, Dr. Benedikt Berninger, was now able to show that single regulator proteins are quite sufficient to generate new functional nerve cells from glia cells. The transition from glia-to-neuron could be followed live at a time-lapse microscope. It was shown that glia cells need some days for the reprogramming until they take the normal shape of a nerve cell. “These new nerve cells then have also the typical electrical properties of normal nerve cells”, emphasises Berninger. “We could show this by means of electrical recordings”.

 “Our results are very encouraging, because the generation of correctly functional nerve cells from postnatal glia cells is an important step on the way to be able to replace functional nerve cells also after injuries in the brain,” underlines Magdalena Götz.

Reference: Benedikt Berninger, Marcos R. Costa, Ursula Koch, Timm Schroeder, Bernd Sutor, Benedikt Grothe, and Magdalena Götz: “Functional Properties of Neurons Derived from In Vitro Reprogrammed Postnatal Astroglia” J. Neurosci. 2007 27: 8654-8664; doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1615-07.2007


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health. "Milestone In The Regeneration Of Brain Cells." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 August 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070820115430.htm>.
GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health. (2007, August 22). Milestone In The Regeneration Of Brain Cells. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070820115430.htm
GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health. "Milestone In The Regeneration Of Brain Cells." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070820115430.htm (accessed October 2, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) — A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Patient Told Hospital He Was from Liberia

Ebola Patient Told Hospital He Was from Liberia

AP (Oct. 1, 2014) — The first Ebola patient diagnosed in the U.S. initially went to a Dallas emergency room last week but was sent home, despite telling a nurse that he had been in disease-ravaged West Africa, the hospital acknowledged Wednesday. (Oct. 1) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robotic Hair Restoration

Robotic Hair Restoration

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — A new robotic procedure is changing the way we transplant hair. The ARTAS robot leaves no linear scarring and provides more natural results. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — A heart monitor the size of a paperclip that can save your life. The “Reveal Linq” allows a doctor to monitor patients with A-Fib on a continuous basis for up to 3 years! Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins