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Open Access Death of Axotomized Retinal Ganglion Cells Delayed After Intraoptic Nerve Transplantation of Olfactory Ensheathing Cells in Adult Rats

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Intraorbital transection of the optic nerve (ON) always induces ultimate apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and consequently irreversible defects of vision function. It was demonstrated that transplanted olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) in partially injured spinal cord have a distant in vivo neuroprotective effect on descending cortical and brain stem neurons. However, this study gave no answers to the question whether OECs can protect the central sensitive neurons with a closer axonal injury because different neurons respond variously to similar axonal injury and the distance between the neuronal soma and axonal injury site has a definite effect on the severity of neuronal response and apoptosis. In the present study, we investigated the effect of transplanted OECs on RGCs after intraorbital ON transection in adult rats. Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-OECs were injected into the ocular stumps of transected ON and a significantly higher number of surviving RGCs was found together with a consistent marked increase in the mRNA and protein levels of BDNF in the ON stump and retina in the OEC-treated group at 7 days, but not 2 and 14 days, time point when compared to the control group. Our findings suggest that OEC transplantation induces the expression of BDNF in the ocular ON stump and retina and delays the death of axotomized RGCs at a certain survival period.
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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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