Snorting Stem Cells Offer Promise for Treatment of Brain Disorders

September 24, 2009

(ChattahBox)—Scientists have pioneered a unique delivery system to administer therapeutic stem cells to the brain, by way of a simple nasal spray. Once the droplets containing the stem cells are snorted through the nose, the solution breaks through the blood-brain barrier, seeding the brain with the stem cells.

Although the research is at the preliminary stages, scientists see a potential benefit to treat numerous brain diseases and injuries, including stroke, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s disease.

Scientists from the University of Minnesota and the University Hospital of Tuebingen, Germany conducted the research. The researchers administered the nasal spray containing rat stem cells to mice and within an hour, the rat stem cells were visible in the mice brains. The researchers then repeated the experiment using human stem cells and they also penetrated the blood-brain barrier within an hour.

It’s believed the stem cells enter the brain through the olfactory nerves through small holes in the cribriform plate, which is a thin horizontal part of the skull at the base of the brain.

The researchers further found that administering an enzyme called hyaluronidase, to the mice before having them snort the stem cells, enabled greater amounts of stem cells to travel to the brain.

The nasal delivery system has obvious benefits over drilling into a patient’s skull to administer the stem cells, which can cause inflammation and infection.

Lead researcher William Frey, an adjunct professor of pharmaceutics at Minnesota noted, “When you cut into the brain, that leads to an inflammatory response,” says Frey. “We’re hoping this will help. We didn’t see evidence that intranasal stem cell treatment caused inflammation.”

The nasal delivery system would also be useful to administer drugs that have difficulty breaking the blood-brain barrier.

Frey sees a promising future for the nasal delivery of therapeutic cells and medicines to the brain.

“Intranasal delivery of therapeutic cells could potentially benefit the treatment of head injury, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and so on,” says Frey.

The study is available in the European Journal of Cell Biology.

Source


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2 Responses to “Snorting Stem Cells Offer Promise for Treatment of Brain Disorders”

  1. Kataweb.it - Blog - diariotip » Blog Archive » News 25 settembre. on September 26th, 2009 3:55 pm

    […] Foundation continues to advance paralysis research – With your help. Rif.: Brain and Spinal Cord Snorting stem cells offer promise for treatment of brain disorders. Rif.: Chattah Box Reactive oxygen in fruit flies acts as a cell signalling mechanism for immune […]

  2. Kataweb.it - Blog - diariotip » Blog Archive » News 25 settembre 2009 on September 26th, 2009 4:00 pm

    […] Foundation continues to advance paralysis research – With your help. Rif.: Brain and Spinal Cord Snorting stem cells offer promise for treatment of brain disorders. Rif.: Chattah Box Reactive oxygen in fruit flies acts as a cell signalling mechanism for immune […]

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