eBook Brain Repair download

by Bruno Will,Donald G. Stein

eBook Brain Repair download ISBN: 0195180909
Author: Bruno Will,Donald G. Stein
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA; 2 edition
Language: English
Pages: 304
ePub: 1319 kb
Fb2: 1985 kb
Rating: 4.7
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Donald G. Stein is Professor of Psychobiology and former Dean of the .

Donald G. Stein is Professor of Psychobiology and former Dean of the Graduate School at Rutgers University. Simon Brailowsky is Professor of Neuroscience at the National University of Mexico. Bruno Will is Professor of Behavioral neuroscience at Louis Pasteur University, Strasbourg, France. Introduction: Brain Repair is an older book, especially for a scientific subject, which may concern perspective readers. To address this concern, I would say that it is a refreshing view on the subject of brain repair, even by today's standards.

Discover new books on Goodreads. See if your friends have read any of Donald G. Stein's books. Donald G. Stein’s Followers. None yet. Stein. Stein’s books. Brain Repair by. Stein, Simón Brailowsky.

Sixty years ago, the Nobel laureate Santiago Ramon y Cajal stated that. In Brain Repair, three internationally renowned neuroscientists team up to off Sixty years ago, the Nobel laureate Santiago Ramon y Cajal stated that "in the adult brain, nervous pathways are fixed and immutable; everything may die, nothing may be regenerated. Today, however, remarkable discoveries from laboratories around the world offer a much more optimistic prognosis. Stein, Simon Brailowsky, Bruno Will. Here is a book that anyone interested in how the brain works will find fascinating and enjoyable. Written in a highly readable style, the book looks at how the damaged brain can be repaired and reconstructed. Neuroplasticity stresses that cells throughout the brain can not only regenerate, but can adapt their function to assume critical roles once performed by damaged tissue.

Brain Repair is well-written and flows from chapter to chap-ter with a consistency one would expect from a single author. Without detracting from the ease with which the text flows, the authors reference the text well in efforts to encourage the inter-ested reader to seek out the original work. I highly recommend this book to neuroscientists, practitioners and lay readers alike.

Frank G. Greiner, MD, Radiology, 216, 350, 2000.

Oder wie das Gehirn sich selbst hilft. Motivation and emotion Donald G. Stein Jeffrey J. Rosen. Basic structure and function in the central nervous system.

After a damaging injury, major or minor, does the human brain have the ability to repair itself? Can Brain cells regenerate? Do whole areas of damage ever fully recover? Only a few decades ago the prevailing notion was that the adult brain was made up of fixed or 'hard-wired' nervous pathwayswhere nothing could regenerate. In many places, conventional wisdom still holds to this idea. Now, in Brain Repair, three internationally renowned neuroscientists team up to offer an intriquing and up-to-date introduction to the exciting advances being made in the research, technology, and treatmentof brain damage.In the United States alone, over a half million people each year will suffer a brain injury -- but the outlook for their eventual recovery is far more hopeful now than it was just a short while ago. The key to neuroscience's most exciting discoveries to date is based on the concept ofneuroplasticity, which stresses that cells throughout the brain can not only regenerate, but can adapt their function to assume critical roles once performed by damaged tissue. In clear and understandable language, the authors show us that the damaged brain can manufacture a number of complexchemicals that actually foster the repair and growth of damaged neurons. The authors describe work where researchers are untangling the mystery of Parkinson's disease or who are trying to understand what goes wrong in stroke victims and what can be done to help these patients recover. In addition,Stein, Brailowsky, and Will discuss how sometimes misguided ideas about brain function can lead to inappropriate medical treatment. Along the way, the authors describe the fascinating history of how brain structure and functioning have been understood and studied, from prehistoric times to thepresent.A best-selling volume in France and Mexico, this new version of Brain Repair provides a vividly written, wide-ranging look at the leading edge of one of science's most exciting frontiers.
Comments: (7)
This is a great book for the layman wanting to understand a detailed overview of the most recent advances in brain repair. It has been the long held opinion that the brain does not heal itself. Doctors Stein, Brailowsky and WIll spell out their studies that indicate that there is hope for brain repair after all. Their studies focus on Alzheimer's disease, spinal cord injury and traumatic brain injury (TBI).

However, this short volume should not be taken as a "how to" for you to treat your loved one at home, nor is it filled with new treatments for you to take to your neurologist. While their experiments stop short of providing final answers, they do give us hope that our loved ones may one day find relief. I get the impression that this book is meant more as a plea for funding for their ongoing research. And I hope they find plenty of underwriting.

If you have a loved one who is suffering from brain injury, this is a great book to get a complete grasp on what they are up against without painting a totally bleak picture, as most medical articles and textbooks often do. That said, the hope they inspire may actually be for the next generation. But read it still for the best education you can get without going to med school.
Brain Repair is an older book, especially for a scientific subject, which may concern perspective readers. To address this concern, I would say that it is a refreshing view on the subject of brain repair, even by today's standards. While it does not include the most current studies and lacks information about some of the most modern technological breakthroughs in neuroscience, it does well for its time. Brain Repair is well written and includes enough real-world examples to hold the interest of even the most reluctant readers.


The introduction to the book instantly captivates the reader by asking him/her to imagine some of the symptoms of neurological disorders. It then details the severe problem to humanity that disorders of and damage to the brain have become. It quickly jumps into the authors' reason for writing, to explain that the established dogma of damage permanence is not the absolute truth. The introduction sets up the tone of the book as a plea for research and funding for research.

Chapter 1
The first chapter provides a historical context for the idea of brain repair. It is a basic outline of the history of ideas about the brain. They discuss ancient practices such as trepanation (drilling of a hole through the skull to treat some kind of neurological symptom). They describe the ancient Egyptian (3500 B.C.) observation that damage to the head could cause serious problems throughout the body. They then discuss the cardiocentric beliefs of the Greeks. They follow ideas about the brain through the rest of history until modern times.

Chapter 2
The discussion moves from history to modern techniques in the second chapter. There is a particular focus on non-invasive techniques that are used to view neurological processes in living beings. They discuss basic radiographic techniques, such as x-rays that project onto film, as well as CAT scans, PET scans, and MRI. They even mention functional MRI, although they mention it as if it were more experimental than it is thought of today. They also discuss EEG in detail.

Chapter 3
The third chapter discusses neurons. In the beginning of the chapter there is a lengthy explanation of how neurons function. After this, they move into a discussion of plasticity, and the neuronal roles in diseases of the brain. They mention the importance of glial cells and trophic factors in this chapter.

Chapter 4
This section begins the detailed discussion of the injured or diseased brain. They spend a good portion of this chapter on traumatic brain imagery. The blood brain barrier, inflammation, recruitment of glial cells, excitotoxicity, recruitment of macrophages, and secondary degeneration (neuronal degeneration after injury has taken place) are all mentioned. They then move into a discussion of axonal regression after axotomy and mention that simply because an injury was localized, does not mean its effects are localized. When discussing the possibility of wide spread damage from localized injury, they discuss the possible pitfalls of MRI analysis, and the unsatisfactory resolution.

Chapter 5
Chapter 5 has a vast amount of information on the possibility of regeneration. In this chapter they focus on Parkinson's Disease, Alzheimer's Disease, and traumatic brain injury. They discuss several possible explanations for recovery in patients with neurological disorders including: vicariance (where one region takes control of a damaged regions functions), redundancy (backup circuits to handle the same information), and functional substitution (expanding of one region to find ways around another). They cite several studies that exhibit regeneration potential. Aside from regeration of neurons (and axons) they also mention collateral growth, which is the forming of synapses by a neuron where it had none previously.

Chapter 6
The main concern of Chapter 6 is discussing the biochemical compounds that induce growth and regeneration. They discuss the proteins that stimulate growth, neurotrophic factors and the particular methods for testing if isolated proteins stimulate growth. They provide great detail on Nerve Growth Factor and its functions, including experimental evidence that it may help limit neuronal degeneration. They also discuss the importance of cell adhesion factors in repair and restoration of neuronal circuits.

Chapter 7
The seventh chapter is concerned with the importance of age in the likelihood of recovery. They mention that current data is contradictory in whether younger or older patients that sustain brain damage have a higher likelihood of recovery. They also mention that when brain damage occurs slowly, it is not as debilitating. They spend a lot of time in this chapter stressing that research does not indicate that adult brains cannot repair themselves (the entire thrust of the book).

Chapter 8
Chapter 8 is brain tissue grafting than. They mention that because of the excitement of fetal stem cell transplants, more work has been done in humans than in monkeys in this area. They discuss many promising results for retinal grafting. They list several techniques for grafting and mention that grafting helped recover spinal function in cats. They move into an ethical discussion and say that grafts are essential for neuronal recovery in many cases. The authors mention that it is likely that it is the chemicals produced by the grafts that are important for regeneration and not the grafts themselves.

Chapter 9
The main focus of this chapter is the possibility of pharmacological brain repair. The authors mention the commercial interest and costs of pharmaceuticals. They discuss the difficulty of making drugs that can cross the blood brain barrier. Of important note is the discussion that many drugs that may seem advantageous can limit the ability of the brain to repair itself. The roles of sex hormones, antioxidants, and gingko biloba on brain repair are considered.

Chapter 10
Chapter ten discusses the importance of environment on brain function and repair. It says that studies manipulating the motivational states of animals are limited but indicate the importance of environmental training on rehabilitation. They discuss blindsight, or the ability to grasp something that is in a blinded region of vision (due to a scotoma). The authors suggest that brain damage may suppress functions instead of eliminating it. Social factors and psychological factors are considered and their importance to recovery analyzed.

The epilogue emphasizes the pitfalls of ignoring behavioral research. There is a plea to understand that brain repair is possible and they make suggestions for how to implement procedures for the treatment of brain injury in hospitals, homes, and laboratories.

The book is written to anyone with an interest in neuroscience. The purpose of the book is to increase awareness of the possibilities of brain regeneration and is also a call for more research in the area. Each chapter begins with a discussion of the fundamental ideas necessary to understand the material in that chapter and ends with a set up for the next chapter. The book is full of example experiments and discussions of their applications.


Introductory Material (Intro-Chapter 4)

The book seizes the attention of the reader immediately. The opening sentence, "Imaging what it would be like to wake up one morning and not be able to read this sentence, or to remember your name, or to hold a cup of coffee," is a powerful way to put the importance of brain injuries into context. By asking the reader to image symptoms of brain dysfunction, the authors quickly convey the severity of the conditions.
The history of ideas about the brain and behavior adds context to current theories. It is especially effective to talk about the turnover of ideas to make the reader realize that currently held views about regeneration may need to be rejected. However, the section is lengthy and is a bit dry. For example the authors write, "Ancient Egyptian scripts tell us that they clearly believed in an afterlife..." This sets up a discussion of embalming procedures. However, mummification practices are common knowledge, and need not be discussed, especially just to say that the ancient Egyptians did not take great care to preserve the brain.

Chapters 2 and 3 are vital for readers who are unfamiliar with neuroscience. The Looking into the Living Brain chapter is particularly interesting because it includes information that argues against localization doctrines: "...PET scans demonstrate that many different brain areas, some quite distant from one another, work together to produce complex patterns of nerve activation and blood flow that are associated with behavior."

Chapter 4 goes into detail about what happens during brain injury and provides necessary background information for understanding how regeneration could work.

Chapter 5

Chapter 5 is arguably the most important chapter in the book. It is where the thrust of the discussion on repair and regeneration begins. Using experimental examples, it conveys this information in a captivating manner. Closing this chapter with, "Scientists are now looking for the `keys' that will unlock the inherent plasticity in brain tissue. The puzzle is not just to find those keys, but to figure out how they work, to determine their risks and benefits to patients," helps to further the tone of the book which is a call for more research to be funded and performed.

Chapters 6 and 7

The sixth chapter is my least favorite chapter in the book. The mention of growth factors when discussing brain repair in regeneration is necessary, but this chapter does not seem to flow well with the rest of the book. I would include it either in the regeneration chapter or the chapter on pharmacology. Chapter 7 is valuable because it discusses the importance of the patient's age on recovery. Many people dismiss brain damage in older people as irreparable. However, present the research as conflicting, may help dispel some of these beliefs. Finding a key to adult brain regeneration is not possible without looking for one.

Chapters 8-10

While Chapter 8 has an interesting title, "Brain Transplants as Therapy for Brain Injuries?" it may be misleading to some readers. The authors are discussion the possibility of grafting to encourage repair and regeneration. They are not discussing entire brain replacements. They discuss three different techniques of grafting which I think is not really important to their readers. Chapter 8 mentions successful brain grafting experiments as well as failures which lends credibility to the authors. The authors make sure to mention alternatives to fetal tissue transplants because they are such an ethically hot issue, " ... the use of cultured cells that can be grown and raised in the laboratory, and then genetically modified, so that specific substances can be produced as needed."

Chapter 9 provides an interesting discussion of pharmaceuticals and their possible role on brain repair. Interestingly, this chapter spends more time discussing antioxidants and common chemicals than pharmaceutical development. This is valuable because it takes the focus away from looking for a "magic pill" and puts it more towards treating biological issues.

Chapter 10 does well in stressing the importance of the environment on recovery. It mentions that little data exists on the change in outcome as a result of environment or motivation but encourages the consideration of environment just the same.


The epilogue brings everything together and moves towards the application of what we know. They discuss the importance of acknowledging that brain repair may be possible in the treatment of disease. They attempt to suggest that physicians be more optimistic about brain damage and disease. The concluding sentence summarizes the entire point of this book very well, "From the breathtaking pace of research thus far, new drug treatments and procedures will surely follow, offering new hope of recovery to the victims of a most terrible kind of trauma".

I would recommend this book to any layperson that is even mildly interested in neuroscience or advances in medical sciences. This book is sure to spark further interest in neuroscience, especially in the idea of repairing brains. Another audience that stands much to gain is one beginning research in a field of neuroscience (especially studying repair or regeneration). This is because the book is easy to understand but still full of valuable information and makes reference to influential work done in neuroscience.
bought it to help with my sister who had suffered a great deal of brain damage; 2 consecutive comas:-( this is a very very technical book and I found no use for "my" purposes, but that doesn't mean it isn't a good book, perhaps for school/college etc;) I had hoped it would help me help her...but it didnt..she passed away.
I must have brought the book but I don't even remember the book or what ever happened to it .
This book gives brief outlines of early findings of studies conducted mostly on mice, rats and a monkey...... Many were not done in the USA.
The idea that the brain can repair itself is a relatively recent one. Up until the 1980s most neurologists believed that once neurons were injured, that was the end of the story. In large part, this belief was fueled by the eminent Spanish anatomist, Santiago Ramon y Cajal, who stated categorically that "nervous pathways are fixed and immutable, everything may die, nothing may be regenerated." Ramon y Cajal was not only quite wrong, he ignored his own research, which demonstrated that the nervous system was fully capable of regeneration.

Brain Repair covers how, and why the brain and nervous system can recover functionality after both abrupt trauma and slow onset injuries. In clear, conversational style, the authors explain how the nervous system works, how it develops and, most importantly, the mechanisms through which it can heal itself. (The chapter on brain transplants was especially interesting.) But this is not a simple science text; the thoughtfulness with which the authors raise relevant issues goes beyond mere biology. "Of what benefit are these findings for patients?" is the question they repeatedly ask--one which all researchers would do well to remember.

If you are interested in neurology, this is the book you need to read before you embark on further research. It will provide you with both the knowledge and a conceptual basis for understanding brain plasticity. Best of all, you don't need to be a neurobiologist to read it.
Although I read this book for a class I was fascinated by it. Regardless of your level of expertise this is a great book. Dr. Stein's book provides an insight into the field of brain repair that is quite unique. It presents a history of brain repair and the current status of it as well as future issues that plague such research. Well written and provides a gateway to future reading. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!