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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2018 Sep 25. doi: 10.1093/gerona/gly221. [Epub ahead of print]

Synergistic Effects of Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation and Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation on Promoting Autophagy and Synaptic Plasticity in Vascular Dementia.

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Department of Neurology, General Hospital, Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China.
Key Laboratory of Immune Microenvironment and Disease (Ministry of Education), Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China.


rTMS and MSCs transplantation both showed therapeutic effects on cognition impairment in vascular dementia model rats. However, whether these two therapies have synergistic effects and the molecular mechanisms remain unclear. In our present study, rats were randomly divided into six groups: control group, sham operation group, VD group, MSC group, rTMS group and MSC+rTMS group. The VD model rats were prepared using a modified 2VO method. rTMS treatment was implemented at a frequency of 5 Hz, the stimulation intensity for 0.5 Tesla, 20 strings every day with 10 pulses per string and six treatment courses. The results of the Morris water maze test showed that the learning and memory abilities of the MSC group, rTMS group and MSC+rTMS group were better than that of the VD group, and the MSC+rTMS group showed the most significant effect. The protein expression levels of BDNF, NR1, LC3-Ⅱ and Beclin-1 were the highest and p62 protein was the lowest in the MSC+rTMS group. Our findings demonstrated that rTMS could further enhance the effect of MSC transplantation on VD rats and provided an important basis for the combined application of MSC transplantation and rTMS to treat VD or other neurological diseases.


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