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Neuropsychologia. 1990;28(6):585-99.

Functional recovery following transplants of embryonic brain tissue in rats with lesions of visual, frontal and motor cortex: problems and prospects for future research.

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Brain Research Laboratory, State University of New Jersey, Newark 07102.


In animals, fetal brain tissue grafts into damaged adult host brain reduce some of the functional deficits caused by brain lesions. Although neurons from transplants survive and develop reciprocal connections with host brain tissue, such connections are generally not enough to replace damaged fibers completely and support behavioral recovery observed. Moreover, grafts never exhibit a normal morphological appearance as compared to adult tissue, but some metabolic activity is occasionally detected within the transplant. Release and/or diffusion of trophic substances from the transplant, in addition to those from the damage host brain, may partially restore neuronal and behavioral functions especially after lesions of the visual cortex. In this case, it can be hypothesized that fetal transplants serve as "living mini-pumps". In addition, there is evidence that the combination of trophic substances (e.g. GM1 ganglioside) and fetal brain transplants may provide a better opportunity for recovery than either treatment given by itself.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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