Scientists have successfully been able to engineer brain cells from the human pee, yes you read it right. You pee could be the door to treat diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. When you urinate, your skin cells are shed without of course you knowing about it from the lining in the kidney. Researchers reprogrammed these cells into stem cells, which can turn into any type of cell available in the body, including brain cells.
According to Marc Lalande, a researcher at the University of Connecticut Health Center, this development in human pee is good because it’s easier to get than blood and hence can be easier to extract from anyone, including children. It is easier to get a child to urinate than to take his or her blood sample.
On the other hand, Chinese researchers that used a newer and safer approach by harvesting skin cells that line the kidneys and are routinely shed in human urine. What they did was they injected new genetic instructions to reprogramme cells that would become brain cells. But unlike the viral method, those instructions only stick around temporarily.
The good news with this form of development is that unlike other stem cell technologies, the pee-based brain cells did not form tumours when implanted into rats.
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