A new study has successfully used gene therapy to cure paralyzed rats. Some degree of limb function was restored to the rats. The success raises hopes that the treatment could be deployed to assist people who are unable to move their limbs.
At the end of the study, it was found that the rats had regained their ability to use their paws and were able to pick up sugar cubes to feed themselves, according to The Independent. The gene therapy trial was conducted at King’s College London, U.K. The focus of the work was to repair damage to the spinal cords of the rodents. The spinal cords of the rats had been purposefully damaged to mimic the damaged sometimes suffered to humans after car crashes.
Quoted by Sky News, Professor Elizabeth Bradbury, one of the principal researchers, stated: “In some of the tests we looked at – such as gripping the rungs of a ladder – the treatment worked within one to two weeks.”
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