Repair of Spinal Cord Injury; Mesenchymal Stem Cells as an Alternative for Schwann Cells

Document Type : Review Article


1 Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Group, National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (NIGEB), Tehran, Iran

2 National Cell Bank, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran



Spinal cord injury (SCI) is one of the most severe types of disabilities that has a limited capacity to repair; therefore, medical interventions are essential to the treatment of injuries. Cell transplantation is one of the remarkable strategies for the treatment of spinal cord injury. Transplantation of Schwann cells (SCs) has shown a great promising result for SCI but harvesting SC is limited due to donor complications and limited cell collection capacity. However, the use of stem cells to differentiate into SCs can reduce the risks associated with the use of mature cells in the grafting process. Mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate to various type cells. They are as easily accessed source with high growth rate and low immunogenicity; therefore, these properties make them an interesting source for cell therapy. These cells can be transdifferentiated into SC-like cells in neuronal induction media. Accordingly, many studies demonstrated that mesenchymal cells are well suited for cell therapy of SCI. This article briefly discusses the treatment of SCI by cell transplantation and the benefits of using Mesenchymal stem cells as an alternative for SCs.


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