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Open Access Stem Cell-Based Therapy for Spinal Cord Injury

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Abstract:

Stem cells (SCs) represent a new therapeutic approach for spinal cord injury (SCI) by enabling improved sensory and motor functions in animal models. The main goal of SC-based therapy for SCI is the replacement of neurons and glial cells that undergo cell death soon after injury. Stem cells are able to promote remyelination via oligodendroglia cell replacement to produce trophic factors enhancing neurite outgrowth, axonal elongation, and fiber density and to activate resident or transplanted progenitor cells across the lesion cavity. While several SC transplantation strategies have shown promising yet partial efficacy, mechanistic proof is generally lacking and is arguably the largest impediment toward faster progress and clinical application. The main challenge ahead is to spur on cooperation between clinicians, researchers, and patients in order to define and optimize the mechanisms of SC function and to establish the ideal source/s of SCs that produce efficient and also safe therapeutic approaches.

Keywords: Differentiation; Inflammation; Remyelination; Spinal cord injury (SCI); Stem cells (SCs)

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3727/096368912X657260

Publication date: 2013-08-09

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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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