Scientists discover new solutions for damaged nerve repair and function remodeling

  The research team of Chinese Academy of Sciences Chen Yuejun and the research team of Zhou Wenhao/Xiong Man of Fudan University and the research team of Zhang Suchun of the University of Wisconsin in the United States have discovered the source of transplanted stem cells by analyzing the neural circuit reconstructed by human dopaminergic neurons transplanted into the brain of Parkinson’s disease model mice. The nerve cells can specifically repair the damaged substantia nigra-striatum circuit in the adult brain, improve the behavioral disorders of Parkinson’s disease model animals, and provide new ideas and theoretical basis for the treatment of brain injury and neurodegenerative diseases. Related results were published online in “Cell-Stem Cell” on September 22.
  The research team used Parkinson’s disease as a model to study the feasibility and mechanism of transplanting stem cell-derived nerve cells into the adult brain to repair damaged neural circuits.
  The cause of motor dysfunction in patients with Parkinson’s disease is the progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of the brain, which destroys the neural connection between the substantia nigra and the striatum, which results in insufficient dopamine secretion in the striatum. In this study, the researchers transplanted genetically-labeled human dopaminergic neurons into the damaged substantia nigra brain area of ​​Parkinson’s disease model mice, and tracked the black matter through genetic technology and rabies virus-mediated tracing technology. The transplanted human dopaminergic neurons were innervated by the upstream nerves, and behavioral tests were performed.
  Studies have shown that damaged neural connections in the adult brain can be repaired structurally and functionally by transplanting nerve cells derived from stem cells, and remodeling nerve function. In addition, different types of nerve cells have different effects on circuit repair. Therefore, for neurological diseases caused by the loss of different types of neurons, it is necessary to transplant specific nerve cells for circuit repair and treatment.