Neural division in Brain

TONYJEFFS tonyjeffs at
Sat Nov 14 11:07:19 EST 1998

Sorry. I don't know what wentwrong with my previous 'text-less' post.

A few comments on the paper in Nature Medicine:

Summary of experiment.
Five  Cancer patients were given a chemical that marks cells undergoing
division. It is therefore useful in assessing the spread of cancer and was
administered as part of their treatment, but the marker cell  will also show
cytogenesis in other cells, such as in this instance  nerve cells in the
hippocampus, so it is useful in research..
The patients unfortunately died of their illness. The researchers obtained
permission to examine their brains post-mortem.
They also looked at the brain of a sixth cancer victim who had not been given
the marker chemical.
The Dentate gyrus, part of the hippocampus, of the first five subjects showed
evidence of neuron division.
Some comments (from a novice):-
1. The control group didn't appear to control for anything much
...the patient who was not given the cell division marker did not show evidence
of cell division marker in his what?
2. I don't understand how they eliminated the possibility that these dividing
hippocampal cells were cancer cells.
I think they could have controlled for this possibility by looking for dividing
cells in heart muscle, and in other brain regions.  If there were dividing
cells everywhere, it would cast doubt on their rsult.
3. I was interested in the references - there are papers on mamalian
hippocampal neuron regeneration going back to the 1960's.

(I'm not experienced in reading this sort of paper - still studying)

I have of the Nature paper on disk. Email me if you want a copy. (text only)
Please be prepared to wait a few days.


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