Effect of Stem Cell Transplantation on Pain Behavior and Locomotor Function in Spinal Cord Contusion Model

Effect of Stem Cell Transplantation on Pain Behavior and Locomotor Function in Spinal Cord Contusion Model
Adipose tissue-derived stromal cells; Spinal cord injury; Neuropathic pain; Locomotor function; Cold allodynia
Issue Date
대한물리치료학회지, v.22, no.3, pp.75 - 85
Purpose: Many trials for new therapeutic approaches such as stem cell-based transplantation have been conducted to improve the repair and regeneration of injured cord tissue and to restore functions following spinal cord injury (SCI) in animals and humans. Adipose tissue-derived stromal cells (ATSCs) have multi-lineage potential to differentiate into cells with neuron-like morphology. Most studies of stem cell transplantation therapy after SCI are focused on cellular regeneration and restoration of motor function, but not on unwanted effects after transplantation such as neuropathic pain. This study was focused on whether transplantation of ATSCs could facilitate or attenuate hindpaw pain responses to heat, cold and mechanical stimulation, as well as on improvement of locomotor function in a rat with SCI. Methods: A spinal cord injury rat model was produced using an NYU impactor by dropping a 10 g rod from a height of 25 mm on to the T9 segment. Human ATSCs (hATSCs; approximately 5x105 cells) or DMEM were injected into the perilesional area 9 days after the SCI. After transplantation, hindpaw withdrawal responses to heat, cold and mechanical allodynia were measured over 7 weeks. Motor recovery on the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor rating scale and on the inclined plane test were also evaluated. Results: The present study demonstrated that increased hindpaw withdrawal responses to cold allodynia was observed in both groups after transplantation, but the development of cold-induced allodynia in the hATSC transplantation group was significantly larger than in the control group. The difference between the two groups in locomotor functional improvement after SCI was also significant. Conclusion: Careful consideration not only of optimal functional benefits but also of unintended side effects such as neuropathic pain is necessary before stem cell transplantation therapy after SCI.
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