Scientists have found that cells taken from the mouth could in future be used to treat neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, among others.
The Tel Aviv University study revealed that cells collected from the oral mucosal, the membrane inside the mouth, can be manipulated into stem cells as easily as those taken from embryos.
One benefit of the oral mucosal cell is that they stay young, no matter the age of the patient.
In addition, as they are taken directly from the individual, there is no risk of rejection.
This discovery may have implications for heart disease, autoimmune conditions and diabetes, according to authors.
In other news, researchers at the University of California Irvine found that human neural stem cells could be used to restore learning and memory abilities that were harmed as a result of radiation treatment in brain cancer.
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