To engage with the broader community, ESNR members, Cindi Morshead, Stephanie Iwasa and Bojana Stefanovic presented their findings at the 2023 CRANIA Conference in a Mini-Symposium entitled Novel Approaches to Enhance Neural Repair: A "Stimulating" Topic. CRANIA is the Center for Advancing Neurotechnological Innovation to Application. CRANIA’s mission is to accelerate the translation of neuromodulation research to patient solutions that improve brain health and function. It aligns well with the ESNR mission.
Currently, electrical stimulation (ES) is used in clinics to treat a variety of disorders including movement/motor impairments. Here ESNR members described how to expand clinical ES application to promote neuroplasticity and neural repair by taking advantage of recent studies demonstrating that ES is effective in activating resident neural stem cells in the brain. Cindi Morshead introduced neural stem cells, their biology and therapeutic potential focusing on activation strategies utilizing drugs and small molecules able to promote neural repair. Stephanie Iwasa focused on recent exciting advances in the effects of ES on neural stem cell expansion, migration and differentiation and optimization strategies that are being developed to promote ES mediated neural regeneration. Bojana Stefanovic provided insight into novel approaches to examine the effects of ES on neural circuitry in injured brains and shed light on the neural network activity that is modified by ES. The symposium provided important insight into repurposing ES for neural repair.
After a successful mini-symposium, we are looking into ways to formalize the connection between ESNR and CRANIA.