Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Damaged Brain Can Be Repaired And Cerebral Functions Restored, Neuronal Study Suggests

Date:
April 7, 2008
Source:
CNRS
Summary:
Scientists have shown that it is possible to repair an injured brain by creating a small number of new, specifically-targeted innervations, rather than a larger number of non-specific connections. Behavioral tests have demonstrated that such reinnervation can thus restore damaged cerebral functions.

A new afference/connection (in red) which has formed contacts on a target Purkinje cell (in blue), permitting functional restoration.
Credit: Copyright Dixon Kirsty

Scientists in the Laboratoire de Neurobiologie des Processus Adaptatifs (CNRS/Universitι Pierre et Marie Curie) have shown that it is possible to repair an injured brain by creating a small number of new, specifically-targeted innervations, rather than a larger number of non-specific connections. Behavioral tests have demonstrated that such reinnervation can thus restore damaged cerebral functions.

Related Articles


Brain injury in adults can cause irreparable, long-term physical and cognitive damage.  However, motor and spatial functions can be recovered if undamaged neurons are stimulated to create new innervation. This type of innervation develops spontaneously after a brain injury in very young children. 

Researchers had previously shown – based on injury to the neuronal pathway linking the stem to the cerebellum(1) – it was possible to induce reinnervation in young adults similar to that observed in newborn infants.  This repair was rendered possible by treating the damaged cerebellum with a peptide(2) called Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) which plays a role in the development and satisfactory functioning of this neuronal pathway.

In the present case, the researchers have extended the use of this model and showed that the terminals of new axons interact with the network of undamaged neuronal cells to restore their associated functions, such as synchronized movement and spatial orientation. These results demonstrate a correlation between an improvement in behavior and the degree of reinnervation in the cerebellum. Thus a small amount of correctly-targeted reinnervation makes it possible to recover fine functions such as motor and cognitive skills.

These results open promising new perspectives and make it possible to envisage using BDNF – already employed during clinical trials on the treatment of neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson's disease – to repair the human brain after a cerebral lesion.

Notes:

1) This neuronal pathway is referred to as the cerebellum to Purkinje cell climbing fiber pathway and it is implicated in the coordination of movements.

2) A protein that is normally present in the brain and is involved in its development and functioning.

Journal reference: Melina L. Willson, Catriona McElnea, Jean Mariani, Ann M. Lohof, and Rachel M. Sherrard. BDNF increases homotypic olivocerebellar reinnervation and associated fine motor and cognitive skill. Brain on April 1st, 2008.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by CNRS. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

CNRS. "Damaged Brain Can Be Repaired And Cerebral Functions Restored, Neuronal Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080405165601.htm>.
CNRS. (2008, April 7). Damaged Brain Can Be Repaired And Cerebral Functions Restored, Neuronal Study Suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080405165601.htm
CNRS. "Damaged Brain Can Be Repaired And Cerebral Functions Restored, Neuronal Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080405165601.htm (accessed February 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 27, 2015) — A dongle that plugs into a Smartphone mimics a lab-based blood test for HIV and syphilis and can detect the diseases in 15 minutes, say researchers. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) — An Italian doctor is saying he could stick someone&apos;s head onto someone else&apos;s body. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) reports. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

Newsy (Feb. 27, 2015) — A new study from researchers at New York University suggests dentists could soon use blood samples taken from patients&apos; mouths to test for diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) — If you&apos;re looking to boost your health this season, there are a few quick and easy steps to prompt you for success. Krystin Goodwin (@Krystingoodwin) has the best tips to give your health a makeover this spring! Video provided by Buzz60
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