Our Illinois brain injury attorneys realize that brain injury research often has two ultimate goals-prevent the occurrence of the injury in the first place and provide actual cures for those who do suffer harm. When it comes to traumatic brain injury, prevention usually seems a more productive goal. That is because we know exactly what causes the harm, at least at the outset-severe head trauma. Prevent that head trauma-in car accidents, falls, and sporting events-and the injuries will not occur. From creating better football helmets to passing seatbelt laws, researchers and policymakers are working on those prevention measures in many ways.
But that doesn’t mean that experts have stopped exploring ways to help those who already have suffered a brain injury. In fact, a lot of attention recently has been paid toward helping those who have already suffer the trauma. It is no easy task. The mysteries of the brain remain baffling in many respects and our wisest minds are only just beginning to learn more about how the brain works and how it can be manipulated.
Some progress has been made, however.
Medical Express News, for example, recently published an article on a research breakthrough that may yield neurological improvement for young brain injury victims. The study, presented last week at the annual Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine meeting, involved the transplanting of stem cells into the brains of rats mimicking neonatal infants. The study found, for the first time, that donor stem cells are capable of being inserted into the recipient’s brain. The cells can survive, migrate to the brain, and provide potential benefits. This is an important new step that may indicate the direction that research in the field will head in the future.
This particular study examined neonatal brain injuries-usually experienced by infants born prematurely. When an infant is born prematurely, brain injuries are one of the most common consequences. In fact, when considering the range of mental harms, including behavioral, attention related, and socialization problems, anywhere from twenty five percent to fifty percent of all premature infants are affected. Our Illinois cerebral palsy attorneys realize that more destructive motor deficit problems, like cerebral palsy, occur in about five to ten percent of those born prematurely.
Little is known about ways to reverse this problem for these infants. However, stem cells have the chance to change that. The cells may be able to be transplanted into victims, repairing damage otherwise thought to be irreversible. One involved medical researcher explained, “Stem cells are a promising source for transplant after a brain injury because they have the ability to divide throughout life and grow into any one of the body’s more than 200 cell types.”
That is what this latest research attempted to take advantage of-in rats with injuries that are similar to those seem in neonatal humans. The result of the study found that use of the stem cells may actually accomplish just what medical experts have hoped it might-repair and rejuvenation of previously injured brain cells. Much more research needs to be conducted. However, this study is an encouraging initial finding that suggests the general claims about stem cell benefits may be valid, improving the lives of countless individuals down the road.
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