|The brain and cervical spinal cord – FC3882|
A 40 year old Polish man, who was paralyzed from the chest down in 2010, has regained his ability to walk after a team of Polish surgeons and British scientists transplanted sensory nerve cells into his injured spinal cord. The treatment involves regenerative olfactory ensheathing cells (OEC’s) found on olfactory bulbs, the sensory nerves responsible for our sense of smell. Surgeons grew OEC’s in a cell culture after removing one of the patient’s olfactory bulbs, and grafted thin strips of nervous tissue harvested from his ankle to bridge a gap in the injured spinal cord. The OEC’s were injected into the spine, stimulating a pathway for spinal cord cells to regenerate along the harvested nerve grafts.