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Research Team Finds Way to Generate Neurons From Skin Cells Without Stem Cells

stem stemcells fibroblasts neurons neurogenesis

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#1 pone11

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 11:34 PM

I found this study fascinating.   The researchers used a 2015 method to turn skin cells directly into neurons, without invoking any stem cells.   Stem cells act like "young" cells whereas the technique they used here preserve the age of the cells.   They then profiled the energy metabolism of the aging brain (which by the way is an ugly thing...read the study and look at the graphs).




Can someone tell me what happens when you take a neuron created from a stem cell and then inject it directly back into the brain?   Has anyone done that in rodents?   Does the new neuron differentiate to where it lands and then go into business?  Or does the cell just die off and the dead cell is waste material for the brain to get out?


Assuming that the neurons stay in place and become active, that makes me wonder if the technique in this study would have any value at all in diseases where significant numbers of neurons had already been lost and there was a lot of brain atrophy.   Could you create new cells from this technique and at least help the brain to get more neurons into the brain tissue?    The neurons would be energy compromised - based on age of the patient - but at least you might address the atrophy and brain shrinkage associated with some types of neurological disease.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: stem, stemcells, fibroblasts, neurons, neurogenesis

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