University of Cambridge > > Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine > What can the olfactory system offer for CNS repair?

What can the olfactory system offer for CNS repair?

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Cell transplantation is one of many possible strategies for encouraging regeneration of the injured CNS . The olfactory system, due to its inherent regenerative properties, has been proposed as a candidate tissue for generating cells for transplantation. In fact intact olfactory mucosa is being used in clinical trails in several countries for the repair of a range of neurodegenerative disorders. The cellular composition of the olfactory system is complex and comprised of many cell types including stem cells, glia and non-neural cells. The relative merits of these various cells types to promote CNS repair and induce less of an astrocytic stress response in a rat model of spinal cord injury will be discussed. Comparisons will also be made to Schwann cells and their non-neural counterpart isolated from the sciatic nerve. Our results suggest that purified glial cells have advantages over non-neural cells for transplant-mediated repair, combining maximal support for axonal regeneration with a minimal astrocytic reaction. Lastly a description of an in vitro models of spinal cord will be shown and data presented on the feasibility of this culture system in screening reagents that can affect neurite outgrowth and myelination.

This talk is part of the Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine series.

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