New research published in The Journal of Neuroscience asserts that transplanted neural stem cells can reduce the destruction of dopaminergic cells and replace cells lost to Parkinson's. A neural stem cell transplant in an animal study demonstrated that the animals continued to function normally, without the progressive loss of physical control that characterizes Parkinson's. The transplant occurred after a toxin was used to destroy neurons that are needed to make dopamine, a key neurotransmitter. The researchers said the therapy occurred at what would be the equivalent of an early stage of the disease.
"We are very cautious but to us, it's an indication that stem cells have promise for Parkinson's disease," says Dr. Cesario V. Borlongan, neuroscientist at the Medical College of Georgia and corresponding author of the study.
- read the report on the study