"This book is engaging and insightful, and has little gems of
information throughout. It will prove accessible for a large educated
audience, yet will also hold the interest of experts in the field. I
highly recommend it."
-- Jill B. Becker, Professor of Psychology, The
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Although there are many scientific and philosophical reasons to study
the brain, for William J. Freed, "the most compelling reason to study
the brain is to be able to repair the brains of individuals with
nervous system injury or disease." Advances in repairing the nervous
system, as well as new data on brain development, growth, and
plasticity, have revolutionized the field of brain research and given
rise to the technology of brain tissue transplantation. In this book
Freed discusses both what may and what may not be possible.
The book covers two aspects of neural tissue transplantation research.
One involves the transplantation of particular cells to repair or
augment specific neuronal systems. This technique could be useful for
such conditions as Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, chronic
pain, and epilepsy. The other line of research concerns regeneration
from injury, especially of the spinal cord.
After providing basic background on transplantation, brain structure,
and development, the book discusses Parkinson's disease, the use of
transplants to influence localized brain functions, circuit
reconstruction, and genetic engineering and other future technologies.