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Regina Bailey

Central Nervous System Repair

By February 1, 2013

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Image Credit: Cell Image Library

Researchers from the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) are attempting to find a suitable method for repairing damage to the central nervous system. Their focus is on discovering biomaterial that can support the growth and development of neural stem cells. This material would be used to develop brain-implantable devices that could be used to promote neuron regeneration.

The researchers identified polylactic acid (PLA) combined with a proportion of the biodegradable materials isomers L and D/L as a suitable source for the support of neural stem cell growth. According to researcher Zaida Alvarez, "The mechanical and surface properties of PLA70/30, which we used here in the form of microthin films, make it a good substrate for neural cell adhesion, proliferation and differentiation." The researchers state that PLA70/30-based scaffolds could be used to create devices that could be implanted in the brain to repair diseased or damaged neurons.

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