Clinical translation of autologous Schwann cell transplantation for the treatment of spinal cord injury

James D Guest, Andrea J. Santamaria, Francisco D. Benavides

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose of review: To describe the current status of testing Schwann cell transplantation as a therapy for human spinal cord injury (SCI). Recent findings: Transplanted Schwann cells have reparative effects in the damaged spinal cord. A few clinical studies have reported that Schwann cell transplantation appears safe. Compared with allogeneic cell transplants, autologous cells do not require immune suppression, but the workload of cell manufacturing is greater. Preclinical Schwann cell transplant studies conducted at the University of Miami in 2009-2012 supported an investigational new drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration. A Phase 1 safety study has been initiated. Summary: Spinal cord repair after severe SCI requires that axonal regeneration and myelination occur in a context of reduced inhibition, enhanced plasticity, and new circuit formation. Evolving clinical experience with Schwann cell transplantation may provide a basis upon which additionally combined therapeutics can be tested to increase the extent of repair after SCI. Safety is the primary consideration when ex-vivo manipulated cells are introduced into the damaged nervous system. Preclinical studies across several species have not indicated safety concerns regarding Schwann cells. Initial clinical reports from studies in Iran and China are suggestive of clinical safety, although more rigorous characterization of the implanted cells is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)682-689
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Organ Transplantation
Volume18
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013

Fingerprint

Schwann Cells
Cell Transplantation
Spinal Cord Injuries
Safety
Therapeutics
Spinal Cord Regeneration
Investigational Drugs
Transplants
United States Food and Drug Administration
Iran
Workload
Nervous System
Regeneration
China
Spinal Cord

Keywords

  • Autologous
  • Cell culture
  • Schwann cell
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation

Cite this

Clinical translation of autologous Schwann cell transplantation for the treatment of spinal cord injury. / Guest, James D; Santamaria, Andrea J.; Benavides, Francisco D.

In: Current Opinion in Organ Transplantation, Vol. 18, No. 6, 01.12.2013, p. 682-689.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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