How injured nerves stop themselves from healing

Press release:

Nerves release a protein at the injury site that attracts growing nerve fibers and thus keeps them entrapped there. This prevents them from growing in the right direction to bridge the injury. The research team headed by Professor Dietmar Fischer reports in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) from 25. May 2021.

There must be another cause

Three main causes for the inability of injured nerves of the central nervous system, or CNS, to regenerate have been known to date: the insufficient activation of a regeneration program in injured nerve cells that stimulates the growth of fibers, so-called axons; the formation of a scar at the site of injury that is difficult for nerve fibers to penetrate; and an inhibitory effect of molecules in the nerve on regrowing axons. “Although experimental approaches have been found in recent decades to address these individual aspects by therapeutic means, even combinatorial approaches have shown only little success,” says Fischer. “So there must be other yet unknown causes for why nerve fibers in the CNS don’t regenerate.”

Continue reading “How injured nerves stop themselves from healing”