Thursday, November 9, 2017
Stem cell responsible for spinal regeneration located
Cells driving gecko's ability to regrow its tail identified," goes into detail about the study done to examine the gecko's cell functions after the tail has been removed. Inside the geckos tail, unlike in mammals, is a portion of the spinal cord so when the tail is removed the gecko is able to not only regrow the tail but the spinal cord as well. The type of cell responsible is called "radial glia," which is a type of stem cell that is usually dormant. However, once the injury is sustained the cells change function and begin to regenerate tissue rather than create scar tissue. Discovering the cells responsible for this could mean the knowledge could be applied to human injuries by coaxing those cells to regenerate tissue rather than apply scar tissue. As humans DNA code for the same type of stem cell as the geckos, for some reason it is not active in the regeneration process. Putting scar tissue over the wound rather than regenerating tissue is a quick fix but is bad for the long run. With this knowledge I think a better understanding of how the injuries can be solved preventing the lose of activity in some limbs due to the spinal injury, which would mean saving a lot of people the pain of having surgeries that may or may not work to regain control of their limbs.