Five Body Parts You May Be Able to Regrow Soon(ish)

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Popular Science - November 17, 2009
Starfish, salamanders, and planarian flatworms share a seemingly magical trait: the ability to regenerate body parts they've lost. While humans may never boast quite the same ability, scientists are perfecting ways to create different types of replacement tissue using stem cells or techniques that kick-start regrowth and development. . . .Spinal cord injuries have typically been considered permanent because the nervous system generates dense scar tissue when it's damaged, which prevents new nerves from regrowing. Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University have isolated a stable version of an enzyme that digests this scar tissue over time, clearing the way for the body's natural repair mechanisms to work. "Repairing spinal cord injuries is going to take a combination of therapies—controlling inflammation after injury, overcoming inhibition due to scarring, and stimulating nerves," says biomedical engineer Ravi Bellamkonda. "We've made one useful step in the direction of making it possible."

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  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:Floyd Wood
  • Created:11/17/2009
  • Modified By:Fletcher Moore
  • Modified:10/07/2016