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Extracted from an article in this weeks new scientist:

That's the thinking behind the work of Richard Kraig, at the University of Chicago. His team discovered that small packets of proteins and RNA in the blood known as exosomes influence myelin production.

Many types of cell release exosomes as a way of delivering specific messages to other cells: they are part of the body's vast communication network. Kraig began to wonder about the roles of exosomes on brain function after reading that transferring the blood of young mice into old mice can reverse their cognitive decline.

He has now shown that exosomes produced in the blood are taken up by OPCs in the brain. Their message is the "trigger to make the myelination go", says Kraig. That raises the exciting possibility that a blood transfusion packed with the right exosomes could help treat multiple sclerosis (MS), in which myelin is attacked by the immune system.

OPC-regulating exosomes are dispensed whenever the brain is stimulated in new ways, such as during exercise and learning. They may be one reason why physical and mental activity help ward off diseases like Alzheimer's. But while advice to exercise the body and mind is not new, for many people it is not that simple – if you have MS, for instance. Kraig hopes that treating people with donor exosomes might improve myelination enough to enable them to exercise, and thus boost exosomes and myelination themselves.
Very interesting. Thanks for posting!
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