Paralysis sufferers across the world have been presented with the possibility of a cure for the first time following pioneering surgery resulting from a British-funded surgical breakthrough.

Polish surgeons operated on Darek Fidyka, a man who was paralysed from the chest down in a knife attack in 2010, and he can now walk again with the aid of a frame.

The treatment, which involved transplanting cells from the patient’s nasal cavity into his spinal cord, is a world first and was carried out by surgeons in Poland in collaboration with scientists in London.

Prior to the treatment, Mr Fidyka had shown no sign of recovery despite months of intensive physiotherapy.

Prof Geoff Raisman, chair of neural regeneration at the University College London’s Institute of Neurology, led the UK research team and believes this development is “more impressive than man walking on the moon.”

Imogen Wetton, a serious injury solicitor at Thompsons Solicitors, commented: “This is a major breakthrough for anyone who has suffered a spinal injury across the world.

“Adjusting to life after a spinal injury can be extremely challenging for the victim and their family, with spinal cord injuries requiring high quality care, support and medical treatment.

“We hope that this treatment can be trialled on more patients at the earliest possible stage and will watch its progression with interest.”