Neutral Axis

Blue Rat Walks Again

by on Jul.28, 2009, under Uncategorized

090727-01-blue-rat-after-dye_bigUsing an amazingly simple method, researchers have successfully restored the ability to walk to a test rat with a broken spinal cord. The recovery took place over a matter of weeks. Remarkable.

The test involved intentionally breaking the back of a white rat (wince) and then injecting a derivitave of common blue food coloring into the animal.  The affect of the dye was to minimize inflammation around the injury site, which allowed the spinal cord to heal.  The only side affect was the lovely blue skin.

Within a week the blue complexion had disappeared and within 6 weeks the animal was walking, albeit a bit clumsily.  Said one of the researchers, “As far as I can see, every patient can receive the blue food dye, because there’s no downside.”

But of course.  Who wouldn’t have thought “I bet blue dye fixes spinal injuries”?   This experiment sounds like something a couple of scientists came up with while drunk … and God bless them for it.

090727-02-rat-before-blue_big

Rat before blue dye injection

090727-01-blue-rat-after-dye_big

Rat after blue dye injection

Repaired spinal cord

Repaired spinal cord

Study published July 27, 2009, by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

via National Geographic


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