AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 27, Number 3, 2018

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New Stem-Cell Based Stroke Treatment Repairs Damaged Brain Tissue

A team of researchers at the University of Georgia’s Regenerative Bioscience Center and ArunA Biomedical, a UGA startup company, have developed a new treatment for stroke that reduces brain damage and accelerates the brain’s natural healing tendencies in animal models.

The research team led by UGA professor Steven Stice and Nasrul Hoda of Augusta University created a treatment called AB126 using extracellular vesicles (EV), fluid-filled structures known as exosomes, which are generated from human neural stem cells.

Fully able to cloak itself within the bloodstream, this type of regenerative EV therapy appears to be the most promising in overcoming the limitations of many cell therapies­—with the ability for exosomes to carry and deliver multiple doses—as well as the ability to store and administer treatment. Small in size, the tiny tubular shape of an exosome allows EV therapy to cross barriers that cells cannot.

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