Human induced neural stem cells support functional recovery in spinal cord injury models

Daryeon Son, Jie Zheng, In Yong Kim, Phil Jun Kang, Kyoungmin Park, Lia Priscilla, Wonjun Hong, Byung Sun Yoon, Gyuman Park, Jeong Eun Yoo, Gwonhwa Song, Jang Bo Lee, Seungkwon You

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a clinical condition that leads to permanent and/or progressive disabilities of sensory, motor, and autonomic functions. Unfortunately, no medical standard of care for SCI exists to reverse the damage. Here, we assessed the effects of induced neural stem cells (iNSCs) directly converted from human urine cells (UCs) in SCI rat models. We successfully generated iNSCs from human UCs, commercial fibroblasts, and patient-derived fibroblasts. These iNSCs expressed various neural stem cell markers and differentiated into diverse neuronal and glial cell types. When transplanted into injured spinal cords, UC-derived iNSCs survived, engrafted, and expressed neuronal and glial markers. Large numbers of axons extended from grafts over long distances, leading to connections between host and graft neurons at 8 weeks post-transplantation with significant improvement of locomotor function. This study suggests that iNSCs have biomedical applications for disease modeling and constitute an alternative transplantation strategy as a personalized cell source for neural regeneration in several spinal cord diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1182-1192
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental and Molecular Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Jun

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by a grant from the Korea Health Technology R&D Project through the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI, South Korea), funded by the Ministry of Health & Welfare (grant number: HI18C2166), Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (grant number: 2020-ER6102-00), the Institute of Animal Molecular Biotechnology Grant, the Korea University Grant, and the Korea University Anam Hospital Grant.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023, The Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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