USC Stem Cell scientists have developed a human brain model that can generate the major cell types of the cerebellum. This includes two cell types important for movement, cognition, and emotion. The breakthrough was published in the journal Cell Stem Cell.
The cerebellum is important for controlling movement, cognitive functions, and emotional processing. Degeneration of Purkinje cells in the cerebellum is linked to disorders like autism spectrum disorder and cerebellar ataxia.
The brain model also formed circuits and showed coordinated network activity. It can mimic normal embryonic brain development. The model could be used to study and find treatments for diseases like medulloblastoma, a prevalent brain tumor in children.
The researchers, led by assistant professor Giorgia Quadrato, believe that the model is a useful platform for discovering new treatments for various diseases. Funding for the project was provided by different foundations.
The research was conducted by a team of scientists from USC, Spatial Genomics, UCLA, and the California Institute of Technology.
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