It has repeatedly been demonstrated that regeneration of the central nervous system in lower animals can occur. In mammals any extensive regeneration has been denied. The absence of neurilemma about the central axons has been the usual reason given for their inability to re-form even though it is now considered that this sheath in the peripheral nervous system functions, not in re-forming the axonal structure, but probably in directing its direction of growth and furnishing nutrient materials. The clinical neurologist has always been interested in the possibilities of central regeneration as an explanation for the gradual resumption of function after severe destructive lesions. The improvement of the severe lesions in the cord associated with pernicious anemia under liver therapy and those of multiple sclerosis under fever therapy seems to cast doubt on the dictum that regeneration of the central nervous system is impossible.
In 1926, Gerard and Koppanyi1 published,
GERARD RW, GRINKER RR. REGENERATIVE POSSIBILITIES OF THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. Arch NeurPsych. 1931;26(3):469–484. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1931.02230090002001
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