Bone marrow stromal cells promote neurite extension in organotypic spinal cord slice: Significance for cell transplantation therapy

Hideo Shichinohe, Satoshi Kuroda, Sachiko Tsuji, Satoshi Yamaguchi, Shunsuke Yano, Jang Bo Lee, Hiroyuki Kobayashi, Seiji Kikuchi, Kazutoshi Hida, Yoshinobu Iwasaki

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    44 Citations (Scopus)


    Objective. Recent reports have indicated that bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) have the potential to improve neurological function when transplanted into models of central nervous system (CNS) disorders, including traumatic spinal cord injury. In this study, the authors aimed to clarify the underlying mechanism through which BMSCs supported CNS regeneration in the spinal cord. Methods. The authors topically applied mouse BMSCs expressing green fluorescence protein (0.4-4 × 104 cells) on the organotypic spinal cord slice culture prepared from 6-day-old rat pups (n = 17). They were co-cultured for 3 weeks after the slice culture started, and the behavior of the applied BMSCs was serially observed using a fluorescence bioimaging technique. The authors completed a histological analysis at the end of the co-cultures and evaluated the profiles of the cultured BMSCs using microarray and immunocytochemistry techniques. Results. The fluorescence bioimaging showed that the BMSCs survived and made a cluster on the slice during the experiments. They also induced a morphological change in the slice within 48 hours of co-culture. Immunohistochemistry analysis showed that the BMSCs promoted a marked neurite extension toward their cluster and some of the BMSCs expressed Tuj-1, an early neuronal marker. Analysis by microarray and immunocytochemistry revealed that BMSCs highly expressed the matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), stromal cell-derived factor-1, and its specific receptor CXCR4. Conclusions. These findings suggest that the donor BMSCs can support CNS regeneration due to their acquisition of a suitable environment for differentiation and promotion of neurite extension via MMPs and chemokines.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)447-457
    Number of pages11
    JournalNeurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2008 Sept


    • Bone marrow stromal cell
    • Cell transplantation
    • Neurite extension
    • Neuronal regeneration
    • Organotypic spinal cord slice culture

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Rehabilitation
    • Neurology
    • Clinical Neurology


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