Recent research findings have discovered a new stem cell in the adult brain that can transform into new brain cells. This research was completed at the famous Lund University in Sweden. The research team was led by Dr. Gesine Paul-Visse and he is hopeful that this work will lead to a better understanding of how disease and injury in the brain can be reversed.
This finding and other research that is now becoming available in the field of neurogenesis provides a physiological basis for the long-term effects of cognitive training. Through cognitive training new neuronal networks are created and their efficiency is enhanced. In this way the human brain’s rehabilitation potential is enhanced by its ability to generate and integrate new neurons into its network to replace damaged or impaired ones.
“Our findings show that the cell capacity is much larger than we originally thought, and that these cells are very versatile,” said Gesine Paul-Visse, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Neuroscience at Lund University and the study’s primary author. “Most interesting is their ability to form neuronal cells, but they can also be developed for other cell types. The results contribute to better understanding of how brain cell plasticity works and opens up new opportunities to exploit these very features.”
“We hope that our findings may lead to a new and better understanding of the brain’s own repair mechanisms,” said Dr. Paul-Visse. “Ultimately the goal is to strengthen these mechanisms and develop new treatments that can repair the diseased brain.”
In this online video you can see a scientific presentation by Dr. Cox summarizing his research and preliminary findings that shows significant improvements in human and animal research pertaining to stem cellular based therapy in the rehabilitation of children with head injuries and individuals who suffer from a variety of other neurological disorders. Dr. Cox emphasizes that this new treatment approach is not “Science Fiction,” but will very likely be available in the near term.
Dr. Sandford has been in communication with Dr. Cox regarding the potential for utilizing the Captain’s Log cognitive training for children with severe TBI who have received this new stem treatment developed by Dr. Cox and his research team at the University of Texas in Houston. The publication of Dr. Cox’s preliminary research has established the safety of stem cellular based therapy for children. Also, many of these patients who had been injected with their own bone marrow stem cells in a six months post-treatment follow-up evaluation significantly improved their intellectual functioning and memory abilities. Dr. Sandford believes that this improvement could be further enhanced by the addition of cognitive training that would exercise these children’s brains and, thus, possibly reinforce further neuronal growth.
Research publication: http://www.crscm.org/Neurosurgery-2010-Cox.pdf