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4.19.2016

Researchers Find Transcription Factor Promotes Axon Regrowth in Central Nervous System Injuries

Researchers at The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have found that a classical transcription factor known as STAT3 locates to different cellular regions and promotes axon regeneration in an injured adult central nervous system.

Data developed by Kevin Park, Ph.D., assistant professor of neurological surgery, and fellow investigators provide mechanistic insights into the mode of actions of STAT3 in the mature central nervous system. They demonstrate that capitalizing STAT3’s effects in combination with modulation of other growth-regulating molecules allows a neural intervention for extensive axon regrowth.

The researchers recently published their findings in an article in the journal Cell Reports titled “Enhanced Transcriptional Activity and Mitochondrial Localization of STAT3 Co-induce Axon Regrowth in Adult Central Nervous System.”

“Promoting injured axons to regenerate over long distances remains a major challenge, but if effectively attained, could help restore motor and sensory functions that are lost after traumatic injury or in neurodegenerative conditions,” said Park. “My colleagues and I are further examining the neural regeneration events and assessing whether the regenerated nerve fibers are navigating properly and forming functional connections.”

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