Health Alert: Link between writer's cramp and brain abnormalities

NATIONAL (WIS) - There's a possible connection between writer's cramp and brain abnormalities, and now researchers are using stem cells from bone marrow to engineer new blood vessels.

University of Buffalo researchers have created blood vessels from adult bone marrow stem cells. They found that bone marrow is a great source of stem cells that contain smooth muscle and endothelial cells that can be used in regenerative medicine for cardiovascular applications.

Though they're still too weak to use, the researchers are working to make the tissue-engineered vessels strong enough for coronary applications. The vessels might one day function like the original tissue in patients who have had surgery requiring vessel replacement.

Anyone suffering from a serious case of writer's cramp knows it's a pain, but what they probably don't know, is that it could also be a sign of brain abnormality.

In a recent study, researchers found that people with writer's cramp, which causes a sustained, involuntary muscle contraction, have less brain tissue than healthy people in three areas of the brain. These areas include the cerebellum, thalamus, and sensorimotor cortex, researchers aren't yet sure if the brain abnormality is a cause, or the result of writer's cramp.

The "Your Disease Risk" website, set up by the Siteman Cancer Center in St. Louis, offers questionnaires to assess a person's risk for cancer, diabetes, the site also offers doctor recommended tips on what you can do to lower your disease risk. But it's important to remember to talk to your doctor about any serious medical concerns.

Reported by Dawndy Mercer

Posted by Logan Smith