Man shares genes with the lamprey, a fish, but the activation of these genes can spontaneously repair spinal cord injuries in animals.
The man comes down from the monkey. And he shares interesting genes with a fish! American researchers have also found in humans genes that are involved in the spontaneous repair of the spinal cord in sea lamprey, a fish species. The results of this study were published in the scientific journal Scientific Report.
Lamprey repairs itself
"Scientists have known for years that lamprey can treat spinal cord injuries alone, but the molecular principle of this remarkable ability has never been identified," says Dr. Bloom, Associate Professor at the Institute. Feinstein, where the research took place.
This fish manages to recover from an injury of this kind in 10 to 12 weeks, this is enough for him to regain his complete swimming abilities.
An ancestor in common with the human
The lamprey looks like an eel. Its genetic heritage shows that more than 500 million years ago, this animal species shared an ancestor with humans. "In this study, we determined all the genes that are activated during lamprey healing," adds the professor.
Some genes are also part of the Wnt signal, which is important in tissue development and regeneration in many animal species. It will now be necessary to determine whether the regeneration processes in humans are compatible with it of the lamprey.
This research, however, represents a hope to find therapeutic treatments for the marrow damage in humans.