Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Human umbilical cord blood cells found to enhance survival and maturation of key brain cells

Date:
December 17, 2010
Source:
University of South Florida (USF Health)
Summary:
In vitro studies examining the activity of human umbilical cord blood cells (HUCB) on experimental animal models of central nervous system aging, injury and disease, have shown that HUCBs provide a "trophic effect" that enhances survival and maturation of hippocampal neurons, benefiting aging adult hippocampal neurons by increasing their survival, growth, differentiation, maturation and arborization.

Paula Bickford, PhD.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of South Florida (USF Health)

Laboratory culture (in vitro) studies examining the activity of human umbilical cord blood cells (HUCB) on experimental models of central nervous system aging, injury and disease, have shown that HUCBs provide a 'trophic effect' (nutritional effect) that enhances survival and maturation of hippocampal neurons harvested from both young and old laboratory animals.

Related Articles


"As we age, cognitive function tends to decline," said Alison E. Willing, PhD, a professor in the University of South Florida's (USF) Department of Neurosurgery and Brain repair and lead author for a study published in the current issue of Aging and Disease. "Changes in cognitive function are accompanied by changes in the hippocampus, an area of the brain where long term memory, as well as other functions, are located, an area of the brain among those first to suffer the effects of diseases such as Alzheimer's disease."

According to Dr. Willing and her USF co-authors, these changes contribute to stroke and dementia in the aging population when neural cells become more susceptible to stressors and disease processes. Because HUCB cells have received attention as an alternative source of stem cells that have been studied and shown to be effective with wide therapeutic potentials, how the cells might be used to repair the diseased, as well as normally aging brain, has become an important question.

"It is important to understand how these cells may be manipulated to support hippocampal function in order to develop new therapies," she explained. "Accordingly, this study sought to examine the potential for HUCBs to enhance proliferation and increase survival of hippocampal cells derived from aging adult rat brains."

The study found that HUCBs were not only able to protect hippocampal neurons taken from the brains of young adult and aged rats, but also promoted the growth of dendrites -- the branching neurons acting as signaling nerve communication channels -- as well as induced the proliferation hippocampal neurons.

"These protective effects may be a function of growth factors and cytokines (a small signaling protein linked to the inflammatory response) produced by the HUCB cells," observed Dr. Willing.

The researchers also reported that the difference between HUCB-treated cultures and non-treated cultures was "more dramatic in the older adult rat brain cultures" than in those younger rats. Further, they speculated that synapses -- the communication links between neuronal cells -may have been forming in the cultures.

They concluded that HUCB cells benefit aging adult hippocampal neurons by 'increasing their survival, growth, differentiation, maturation and arborization' (branching).

"The mechanisms by which HUCB cells extend the life of hippocampal cells may include enhancing the proliferative capacity of the cells or protecting existing and newly generated neurons from damage and death," concluded Dr. Willing.

According to Dr. John Sladek, professor of neurology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, this study is important for its potential contribution to regenerative medicine's future ability to benefit from an important source for stem cells, the umbilical cord.

"The fact that HUCBs enhanced the survival of -- and maturation of -- hippocampal neurons has profound implications for the treating brain injury and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, ALS and Parkinson's disease," said Dr. Sladek.

Study contributors included: Ning Chen, Jennifer Newcomb, Svitlana Garbuzova-Davis, Cyndy Davis Sanberg, and Paul R. Sanberg.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of South Florida (USF Health). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ning Chen, Jennifer Newcomb, Svitlana Garbuzova-Davis, Cyndy Davis Sanberg, Paul R. Sanberg, and Alison E. Willing. Human Umbilical Cord Blood Cells Have Trophic Effects on Young and Aging Hippocampal Neurons in Vitro. Aging and Disease, Volume 1, Number 3; 173-190, 2010 [link]

Cite This Page:

University of South Florida (USF Health). "Human umbilical cord blood cells found to enhance survival and maturation of key brain cells." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101214142741.htm>.
University of South Florida (USF Health). (2010, December 17). Human umbilical cord blood cells found to enhance survival and maturation of key brain cells. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101214142741.htm
University of South Florida (USF Health). "Human umbilical cord blood cells found to enhance survival and maturation of key brain cells." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101214142741.htm (accessed November 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

AP (Nov. 21, 2014) Marine Corps officials say a special operations officer left paralyzed by a sniper's bullet in Afghanistan walked using robotic leg braces in a ceremony to award him a Bronze Star. (Nov. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers find that as people approach new decades in their lives they make bigger life decisions. Video provided by Newsy
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