Navigation Links
When smell cells fail they call in stem cell reserves

Hopkins researchers have identified a backup supply of stem cells that can repair the most severe damage to the nerves responsible for our sense of smell. These reservists normally lie around and do nothing, but when neighboring cells die, the scientists say, the stem cells jump into action. A report on the discovery will appear online next week in Nature Neuroscience.

“These stem cells act like the Army Reserves of our nose,?explains lead author Randall Reed, Ph.D., a professor of neuroscience at Johns Hopkins, “supporting a class of active-duty stem cells that help repair normal wear and tear. They don’t come in until things are really bad.?

The only nerve cells in the body to run directly from the brain to the outside world, olfactory cells are under constant assault from harsh chemicals that one might happen to catch a whiff of by accident, risking damage or death.

To figure out how the olfactory system repairs severely damaged nerve cells, Reed’s team exposed mouse olfactory nerves to a cloud of toxic methyl-bromide gas. Methyl bromide kills not only olfactory nerve cells but also neighboring, non-nerve cells in the nasal passage. Three weeks after chemical exposure, the researchers examined nasal cells to see which, if any, had grown back.

They discovered that the newly grown cells, both nerve and non-nerve, grew from HBCs-a population of cells not previously known for repair abilities. “We were stunned because HBCs normally don’t grow much or do anything,?says Reed. “And the most surprising thing is that HBCs can grow into both nerves and non-nerve cells; they do so by generating the other active type of nasal stem cell.?

The team then went back and looked at nerve repair under less damaging circumstances where only the olfactory nerve cells are killed. In this situation, the HBCs did nothing to repair the damaged cells; rather, they allowed the previously known stem cells to do all the repair work.

“The ability to smell is crucial for eating, mating and survival, and it’s important that the olfactory system be fully operational all the time,?explains Reed. “The HBCs act as a fail-safe to ensure continued function of the sense of smell.?

The discovery of these two distinct types of stem cells in one neural tissue is a first, says Reed, who is interested to see if other types of nerves in the body have similar repair mechanisms in play.
'"/>

Source:Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions


Related biology news :

1. Love at first smell
2. Bacteria feed on smelly breath (and feet)
3. Fighting malaria by manipulating mosquitoes sense of smell
4. New study examines how sense of smell affects mating and aggression in mice
5. Worms know bad food when they smell it
6. Duck-billed dino crests not linked to sense of smell
7. Neuroscientists discover new cell type that may help brain maintain memories of smells
8. Can dogs smell cancer?
9. Researchers show how brain decodes complex smells
10. Quick -- what’s that smell?
11. Contrary to common wisdom, scientist discovers some mammals can smell objects under water

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:10/4/2017)... Oct. 4, 2017  GCE Solutions, a global clinical research organization ... document anonymization solution on October 4, 2017. Shadow is designed to ... comply with policy 0070 of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in ... ... ...
(Date:6/30/2017)... , June 30, 2017 Today, American ... and supplier of face and eye tracking software, ... Product provider program. "Artificial intelligence ... way to monitor a driver,s attentiveness levels while ... being able to detect fatigue and prevent potential ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... TEANECK, N.J. , May 16, 2017  Veratad ... leading provider of online age and identity verification solutions, ... the K(NO)W Identity Conference 2017, May 15 thru May ... Ronald Regan Building and International Trade Center. ... across the globe and in today,s quickly evolving digital ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... Disappearing forests and increased emissions ... over 5.5 million people each year. Especially those living in larger cities are affected ... based in one of the most pollution-affected countries globally - decided to take action. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... San Diego-based team building and cooking events ... announced today. The bold new look is part of a transformation to increase ... a significant growth period. , It will also expand its service offering from its ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Dr. Bob Harman, founder and CEO of VetStem Biopharma, ... The event entitled “Stem Cells and Their Regenerative Powers,” was held on ... DVM, MPVM was joined by two human doctors: Peter B. Hanson, M.D., Chief of ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... business process optimization firm for the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a ... in San Francisco. , The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” ...
Breaking Biology Technology: