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Successful replacement of neurons lost in Parkinson's disease


Key points from article :

Reprogramming a patient's own skin cells to replace cells in the brain, shown feasible.

These are for cells progressively lost in Parkinson's disease called dopaminergic neurons.

This overcomes barriers associated with use of cells from another individual.

Team reprogrammed a 69-year-old patient's skin cells to embryo-like pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

And then differentiated them to take on the characteristics of dopaminergic neurons.

Gained FDA approval for single-patient, expanded-access protocol to implant cells in patient's brain.

A novel minimally invasive neurosurgical implantation procedure was done.

2 years later, imaging tests show transplanted cells are alive and functioning correctly.

Patient has enjoyed improvements in his daily routine and quality of life.

By team of investigators from McLean Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

Published in New England Journal of Medicine.

New therapeutic personalized strategy could bring back movement to those suffering

Mentioned in this article:

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Chief of Neurosurgery at MGH


Neurosurgeon, MGH


South Korean neuroscientist, McLean Hospital

Health Organisation

Largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School located in Boston

Health Organisation

Psychiatric hospital, affiliate of Harvard Medical School


Neurosurgeon, Weill Cornell Medicine


Scientific Journal devoted to medical research.


Neurologist, MGH


Biomedical research unit and medical school of Cornell University.