A man who was paralysed from the chest down after a knife attack in 2010 can now ride an adapted tricycle.
In 2014, surgeons in Poland announced they had reversed Darek Fidyka’s paralysis using cells taken from his nose to repair his spinal cord.
The former fireman says he has noticed a gradual return of feeling and muscle control below his injury.
The surgical team are now launching a search for two more paralysed patients who they will try to help walk again.
Mr Fidyka told me: “I can tell that sensation is coming back and I am getting stronger. A year ago I would not have been able to ride a tricycle. Now I can feel each muscle and each press of the foot on the pedals.”
The medical team are now launching the worldwide search as they are looking for patients with an uncommon type of injury, where the spinal cord has been completely severed, which can happen after a knife injury.
The head of the project, surgeon Dr Pawel Tabakow said: “If we can bridge the gap between two spinal cord stumps then there will be no doubt that our technique works and this will be historic – if we succeed we will have found a cure for paralysis.
“Then we will be able to help other patients with the most common type of injury, caused by a crush or compression.”