Researchers from Lund University (Sweeden) and the Institute of Neurosciences of the University of Barcelona (UBNeuro) have recovered, through cell therapy, the mobility and sensibility of mice that suffered a cardiovascular accident. The results of this study were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
Researchers used an ischemic model of ictus in mice to which they transferred stem cells obtained from the skin of a healthy human donor. The cells were reprogramed to become neuronal progenitors of the damaged area of the brain, specifically the brain cortex. Six months after the transplant, researchers could observe how the new cells had repaired the damage that was caused by the cerebrovascular injury. In addition, the sensor and motor problems resulting from the stroke had been reversed as well.
“We observed that the fibers of the cells that were put in the cortical area grew and created connections in brain areas that are far from the transplant area”, notes Daniel Tornero, researcher in the Laboratory of Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine in UBNeuro. To identify the transplanted cells, researches used different techniques that enable the monitoring so as to prove the connection in damaged circuits is right. “Although there is a lot of work to do -the researcher adds-, the study sheds light on the possibility of replacing the damaged cells for new healthy cells in patients with ictus”.
This is the last study of a series of three articles in which the researchers used cell therapy to work on brain healing. Previous studies showed it is possible to transplant nervous cells derived from human stem cells or reprogrammed cells in the brain of mice affected by cardiovascular injuries. However, researchers did not know whether the transformed cells could create new connections in the mice brains and restore the movement and feelings of touch.
“The next step is to understand how the transplant affects intellectual functions such as memory, and the potential adverse effects”, concludes Tornero.
S. Palma-Tortosa, D. l Tornero, M. Grønning Hansen, E. Monni, M. Hajy, S. Kartsivadze, S. Aktay, O. Tsupykov, M. Parmar, K. Deisseroth, G. Skibo, O. Lindvall, y Z. Kokaia. “Activity in grafted human iPS cell–derived corticalneurons integrated in stroke-injured rat brain regulatesmotor behavior“. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Doi: doi: 10.1073/pnas.2000690117