From animal models to humans: Strategies for promoting CNS axon regeneration and recovery of limb function after spinal cord injury

Lawrence Moon, Mary Bartlett Bunge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


There are currently no fully restorative therapies for human spinal cord injury (SCI). Here,we briefly review the different types of human SCI pathology as well as the most commonly used rodent and nonhuman primate models of SCI that are used to simulate these pathologies and to test potential therapies. We then discuss various high profile (sometimes controversial) experimental strategies that have reported CNS axon regeneration and functional recovery of limb movement using these animal models of SCI. We particularly focus upon strategies that have been tested both in rodents and in nonhuman primates, and highlight those which are currently transitioning to clinical tests or trials in humans. Finally we discuss ways in which animal studies might be improved and what the future may hold for physical therapists involved in rehabilitation of humans with SCI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-69
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Neurologic Physical Therapy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005



  • Animal
  • Functional recovery
  • Human
  • Plasticity
  • Regeneration
  • SCI
  • Therapies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Clinical Neurology

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