Stem cell hope for spine injuries

May 13, 2018 12:02 am | Updated 12:29 pm IST

An international team of researchers led by scientists at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, U.S., have reported of being able to successfully graft induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived neural precursor cells back into the spinal cords of genetically identical adult pigs, avoiding the accompanying immunosuppression efforts. The grafted cells survived long term, displayed differentiated functionality and caused no tumours. So far, a major hurdle to using neural stem cells derived from genetically different donors to replace damaged or destroyed tissues, such as in a spinal cord injury, has been the persistent rejection of the introduced material (cells). This has necessitated the use of complex drugs and techniques to suppress the host’s immune response. The findings, which have been published in Science Translational Medicine , show that the same cells showed similar long-term survival in adult pigs with different genetic backgrounds after only short-course use of immunosuppressive treatment, once injected into the injured spinal cord.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.