It may be that previously inoperablee nerve damage can be repaired with cells taken from the patient's nose. Nerve fibers in the nose are in constant growth, and because they are from the patient's own body, they don't get rejected by the patient's immune-system.
At least ten operations will be carried out to test in humans a technique pioneered in animals by the neuroscientist Geoffrey Raisman, who heads the spinal repair unit of University College, London. He discovered 20 years ago that cells from the lining of the nose constantly regenerate themselves. Professor Raisman's team believes that if those cells were implanted at the site of the damage they would build a bridge across the break, allowing the nerve fibres to knit back together.Link (via /.)