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Nanoscale brain repair: more detail from Nature

I’ve mentioned this MIT work before, but there’s a more technical summary available over at Nature.com (free reg req’d):

“Ellis-Behnke and colleagues have now taken things a step further by demonstrating the regeneration of functional brain tissue in live animals. They made cuts in the part of the midbrain of hamsters that processes vision, rendering them sightless. In untreated animals, this lesion turned into scar tissue that prevented any regrowth, and the hamsters remained blind. But when Zhang’s self-assembling peptides were injected into the wound region, the lesions healed within several weeks: the axons grew to close the gap, and the animals regained some sight. The peptide network, say the researchers, ‘appears to knit the tissue together’.

“They hope ultimately to conduct trials on humans who have suffered spinal-cord injuries.”

This kind of dramatic result, so early in the nano revolution, gives weight to the arguments for truly astonishing results once we progress from nanomaterials (now), through nanodevices, to nanosystems.

Bring it on, as they say. (Credit: Instapundit)

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