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Nanomedicine. 2007 Dec;3(4):311-21. Epub 2007 Oct 26.

Reknitting the injured spinal cord by self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold.

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Department of Anatomy, The University of Hong Kong Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR, China.


In traumatic spinal cord injury, loss of neurological function is due to the inability of damaged axons to regenerate across large, cystic cavities. It has recently been demonstrated that a self-assembled nanofiber scaffold (SAPNS) could repair the injured optical pathway and restore visual function. To demonstrate the possibility of using it to repair spinal cord injury, transplanted neural progenitor cells and Schwann cells were isolated from green fluorescent protein-transgenic rats, cultured within SAPNS, and then transplanted into the transected dorsal column of spinal cord of rats. Here we report the use of SAPNS to bridge the injured spinal cord of rats, demonstrating robust migration of host cells, growth of blood vessels, and axons into the scaffolds, indicating that SAPNS provides a true three-dimensional environment for the migration of living cells.

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