Laying some groundwork for the readers that are not doctors, like myself, that might have a difficult time understanding the magnitude of this post is crucial. Glial cells are non-neural cells that help keep homeostasis and with the maintenance of the myelin sheath. These cells also help with protection and support of neurons in one’s central and peripheral nervous system.The oligodendrocyte progenitor (e.g., AST-OPC1), http://www.scistar-study.com/about-scistar-study.html, cells is a glial cell but with fewer protuberances or responsibilities concerned with the production of myelin in the central nervous system. The purpose of the myelin sheath is to help is to increase the speed at which impulses spreads along the myelinated fiber. Motor functions are the transmissions of messages from the brain to muscle groups to create movement.
The news on Kristopher Boesen regarding stem cell research is more than exciting! A person might not know what happened to Mr. Boesen and that is okay. Mr. Boesen lost control of his automobile while traveling on a slippery road. He awoke in a hospital paralyzed from the neck on down. Doctors cautiously told his parents that he might never walk again.
The news of Mr. Boesen drew the attention of Dr. Liu and his stem cell research team at University of Southern California-Los Angeles. Dr. Liu and his medical masterminds developed a procedure to inject 10 million AST-OPC1 cells, directly into Mr. Boesens’ cervical spinal cord. The hopes are that this patient will see improvement in his mobility and regained independence.
After just three weeks Mr. Boesen noticed signs of improvement. Within two months he could answer phone, write his name, and operate a wheelchair. He had regained significant improvement in his motor functions; which are the transmissions of messages from the brain to muscle groups to create movement. He recovered two spinal chord levels, http://www.spinalinjury101.org/details/levels-of-injury, which made a huge difference in his movement abilities. It was the difference between minimal movement or none at all and being able to function on his own.
When later he was asked about the experiment Mr. Boesen said, “All I’ve wanted from the beginning was a fighting chance…But if there’s an opportunity for me to walk again, then heck yeah! I want to do anything possible to do that.”
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