How the discovery of neuronal stem cells have changed neuroscience and perspective for the therapy for central nervous system illnesses
; Department of Biotechnology, University of Rijeka, Radmile Matejčić 2, 51000 Rijeka, Croatia
ANDREA NISTRI ; Neuroscience Department, International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA), 34136 Trieste, Italy
ANA DEKANIC ; 1_Department of Biotechnology, University of Rijeka, Radmile Matejčić 2, 51000 Rijeka, Croatia
Mostly-incurable central nervous system diseases and disorders, such as
neurodegenerative diseases, stroke, brain and spinal cord injuries and psychiatric illnesses, represent one of the most difficult health problems today, in terms of mortality, disability, productivity loss and health-care costs. After disappointing results regarding the translational value of neuroprotective molecules and protocols from preclinical research on animals to clinic, a new hope for the developing effective treatments for brain and spinal cord disorders came with the discovery of neuronal stem and progenitor cells, which have the potential to differentiate into a myriad of different glial and neuronal cell types. The basic biology behind the neuronal stem cells is becoming discovered, paving the way to possibilities for their manipulation and reprograming and for their clinical applications. Some of those protocols and clinical trials are described in this paper, with the emphasis on spinal cord injury treatments.
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