In my Atlanta-based law practice, one of greatest challenges I face is the attempt to recover adequate compensation for survivors of catastrophic spinal cord injury.

No amount of money is ever really sufficient to fully compensate a person whose life has been tremendously changed by such an injury. Therefore, I am always interested in new treatments that might help alleviate the effects of injury.

Now, a new study  in the current edition of the journal Science suggests that the cancer drug Taxol could be useful in the treatment of severe spinal cord injuries.Researchers in Maryland, Florida, Germany and the Netherlands found that the drug may contribute to the regeneration of neural cells in the spinal cord. They administered the drug directly to the area of a spinal cord lesion in rats immediately after an injury. Over time, they found that the animals who were given the drug regained far more movement that those who did not.

We may be a long way from clinical treatment of human spinal cord injury survivors, but the animal studies are of considerable interest.




 Ken Shigley is president-elect of the State Bar of Georgia.  He is also author of Georgia Law of Torts: Trial Preparation & Practice and a Certified Civil Trial Advocate of the National Board of Trial Advocacy. He has been listed as a "Super Lawyer" (Atlanta Magazine), among the "Legal Elite" (Georgia Trend Magazine), and in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. He practices law at the Atlanta law firm of Chambers, Aholt & Rickard, and has broad experience in catastrophic personal injury, spinal cord injury, wrongful death, products liability, brain injury and burn injury cases.  This post is subject to our ethical disclaimer