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J. Clin. Med. 2015, 4(1), 37-65; doi:10.3390/jcm4010037

The Potential for iPS-Derived Stem Cells as a Therapeutic Strategy for Spinal Cord Injury: Opportunities and Challenges

1
Department of Genetics and Development, Toronto Western Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, M5T 2S8, ON, Canada
2
Department of Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5T 1P5, ON, Canada
3
Institute of Medical Sciences, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5S 1A8, ON, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Michael J. Edel
Received: 1 October 2014 / Accepted: 28 November 2014 / Published: 29 December 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue iPS Cells for Modelling and Treatment of Human Diseases)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [660 KB, uploaded 29 December 2014]   |  

Abstract

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating trauma causing long-lasting disability. Although advances have occurred in the last decade in the medical, surgical and rehabilitative treatments of SCI, the therapeutic approaches are still not ideal. The use of cell transplantation as a therapeutic strategy for the treatment of SCI is promising, particularly since it can target cell replacement, neuroprotection and regeneration. Cell therapies for treating SCI are limited due to several translational roadblocks, including ethical and practical concerns regarding cell sources. The use of iPSCs has been particularly attractive, since they avoid the ethical and moral concerns that surround other stem cells. Furthermore, various cell types with potential for application in the treatment of SCI can be created from autologous sources using iPSCs. For applications in SCI, the iPSCs can be differentiated into neural precursor cells, neurons, oligodendrocytes, astrocytes, neural crest cells and mesenchymal stromal cells that can act by replacing lost cells or providing environmental support. Some methods, such as direct reprogramming, are being investigated to reduce tumorigenicity and improve reprogramming efficiencies, which have been some of the issues surrounding the use of iPSCs clinically to date. Recently, iPSCs have entered clinical trials for use in age-related macular degeneration, further supporting their promise for translation in other conditions, including SCI. View Full-Text
Keywords: spinal cord injury; clinical translation; neuroprotection; cell therapy; neuroregeneration spinal cord injury; clinical translation; neuroprotection; cell therapy; neuroregeneration
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MDPI and ACS Style

Khazaei, M.; Siddiqui, A.M.; Fehlings, M.G. The Potential for iPS-Derived Stem Cells as a Therapeutic Strategy for Spinal Cord Injury: Opportunities and Challenges. J. Clin. Med. 2015, 4, 37-65.

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