Visualizing nerve damage as an electrical cord with a short in it helped researchers at Tel Aviv University in Israel devise a potential treatment to reverse nerve damage. They visualized and then developed a tube running between the damaged nerve ends to restore function and eliminate pain. This special micro-tube is filled with a gel that contains three special ingredients to encourage the repair and re-growth of the damaged neurons: Antioxidants that give anti-inflammatory benefits; synthetic laminum peptides to provide a track along which new neurons can grow and hyaluronic acid to keep the tube from drying out. The tube itself is biodegradable. The special gel has also been used alone in cell therapy and has been proven to preserve cells and encourage cell growth.
While it is still a ways away from being used in humans, animal studies have been successful and the developers of this technology are hopeful that it will be available within a few years. They see this development as helping people with paralysis and other nerve damage problems as well as using the gel in cell therapy to help the symptoms of Parkinson’s.