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Turk Neurosurg. 2016;26(1):127-39. doi: 10.5137/1019-5149.JTN.15724-15.0.

The Effects of Adipose Tissue-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation During the Acute and Subacute Phases Following Spinal Cord Injury.

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Istanbul University, Istanbul School of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery, Istanbul, Turkey.



To investigate the effectiveness of rat adipose tissue-derived (rAT) mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) transplantation on the functional restoration and regeneration of spinal cord injury (SCI).


Six of 48 Wistar albino rats were sacrificed to obtain MSCs, and the remaining rats were divided randomly into six groups. SCI was performed using the clip compression method. The control and transplantation groups were injected with physiological saline and a rAT-MSC suspension at the injury sites, respectively. Each animal was evaluated using the Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan (BBB) rating system and sacrificed at 28 days post-injury period (p.i.). The regeneration process was evaluated based on immunostaining against β3-tubulin, BDNF, CNTF, and CNPase.


rAT-MSC transplantation into the SCI site substantially improved the tissue regeneration and functional recovery (p < 0.05). However, the rAT-MSC transplantation at 9 days p.i. was not more efficient on functional recovery than the transplantation immediately after injury. The expression of β3-tubulin, BDNF and CNTF at the injury site indicated the potential for functional regeneration.


The adaptive nature of rat-MSCs enabled the remodulation and regeneration of the lesion site, decreasing the importance of transplantation time in the treatment of SCI.

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