The antidepressant rolipram help rats recover from spinal cord injury, Damien Pearse and his colleagues report in the June issue of Nature Medicine.
Rolipram acts by preventing the destruction of the intracellular messenger cAMP, a small molecule that affects the growth of nerve fibers. Pearse and colleagues treated spinal cord-injured rats with rolipram in combination with a cAMP analog and grafts of Schwann cells, the cells that produce the insulating sheath around nerve fibers. They found that this treatment significantly improved movement, and promoted the survival and growth of the fibers beyond the lesion site.
The profound effect of this three-pronged strategy might have important implications for therapeutic intervention to improve outcome after human spinal cord injury.
Damien D Pearse (University of Miami School of Medicine, FL, USA)
Tel: +1 305 243 4596, E-mail: email@example.com
Also published online.
(C) Nature Medicine press release.
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