Adult Bone Marrow Stem Cells and Biocompatible Polymers in SCI Repair pp. 199-222
Authors: (A. Hejčl, P. Jendelová, E. Syková, Institute of Experimental Medicine, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Prague, and others)
Abstract: Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a complex and dynamic process that will require multiple approaches to yield successful therapy. Bone marrow stem cells and biomaterials represent an important part of SCI neurotransplantation research in the last decade. The behavior of rat and human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) grafted to the injured spinal cord has been studied in terms of the cells‘ participation in lesion repair, their differentiation and their ability to promote functional recovery. The fate of MSCs has been followed using cells labeled in culture with superparamagnetic iron-oxide nanoparticles. The effects of implanted rat MSCs was compared with the implantation of a freshly prepared mononuclear fraction of bone marrow cells (BMCs) or the injection of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor. Lesioned animals grafted with MSCs, BMCs or treated with G-CSF had significantly smaller lesions and better motor performance. The transplantation of MSCs in animal models of chronic SCI (which result in cavity formation) led to only modest improvement. Autologous BMC implantation was used in a Phase I/II clinical trial in patients with SCI. Intra-arterial vs. intravenous administration and groups of acute vs. chronic patients were compared. Implantation was safe; in addition, 5 out of 6 patients with a subacute cervical lesion improved their function following the administration of BMCs via a. vertebralis.