Moving from rats to patients: swift progress for electrical simulation in treating paralysis

Sometimes the pace of medical progress takes even us by surprise. Last month a paper was published in the Lancet by a team of clinicians and scientists at the University of Louisville that we certainly were not expecting to see so soon, reporting that electrical stimulation of the lower spinal cord had restored voluntary movement … Continue reading Moving from rats to patients: swift progress for electrical simulation in treating paralysis

Paralysed dogs walk again thanks to nasal cell transplants…and Professor Raisman’s rats.

This morning the BBC News carried a report on a medical breakthrough – and it is not a term  I use lightly – that has enormous implications for people who have been paralysed following spinal cord injuries.  A team at the University of Cambridge led by Professor Robin Franklin  Department of Veterinary Medicine, along with colleagues … Continue reading Paralysed dogs walk again thanks to nasal cell transplants…and Professor Raisman’s rats.

Not Difficult To Grasp

Paralysis can have tremendous negative consequences for a person's quality of life.  In the US alone, there are more than 200 thousand people living with chronic spinal cord injury, which is a cause of immense suffering to them and their families.  The disease generates economic burden for society as well.   Thus, there has been … Continue reading Not Difficult To Grasp

Tom talks nerdy to Cara Santa Maria about monkeys, prosthetic hands and brain machine interfaces.

Speaking of Research founder Tom Holder was  recently interviewed by the Huffington Post’s new science correspondent Cara Santa Maria for her blog “Talk Nerdy To Me” . In her latest post Cara examines whether research performed on monkeys by a Chinese group with the aim of developing improved brain-machine interface technology to control a prosthetic … Continue reading Tom talks nerdy to Cara Santa Maria about monkeys, prosthetic hands and brain machine interfaces.

A paralysed man touches his girlfriend’s hand…thanks to animal research.

Earlier this year we reported that scientists at the University of Pittsburgh had launched clinical trials of two different brain implant systems, known as brain machine interfaces,  that aim to give quadriplegic patients control over a prosthetic limb. At the time we noted that this technology was built on years of basic and translational research … Continue reading A paralysed man touches his girlfriend’s hand…thanks to animal research.

A paralyzed man stands again…thanks to animal research!

Yesterday an article appeared in the New York Times describing how scientists, supported by the National Institutes of Health and the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, have used electrical stimulation of the lower spinal cord to enable a man who had been completely paralyzed below chest level to stand again,  and even to take steps … Continue reading A paralyzed man stands again…thanks to animal research!

Spider silk used to repair nerve damage in sheep

On Friday I discussed some recent developments in use of stem cells to repair spinal cord damage, but central nervous system damage is not the only cause of paralysis; every year many thousands of people become paralysed in a limb due to peripheral nerve damage. A difference between peripheral nerve damage and central nervous system damage is … Continue reading Spider silk used to repair nerve damage in sheep

Transplanted astrocytes repair spinal cord damage in rat

A couple of weeks ago I discussed the launch of two clinical trials of brain machine interfaces designed to allow quadriplegic patients to control a newly designed prosthetic limb, during which I mentioned that scientists are also studying techniques that attempt to repair damage to spinal cords using stem cells.  Several approaches have already shown … Continue reading Transplanted astrocytes repair spinal cord damage in rat