To observe the reconditioning effect of oligodendrocyte-like cell transplantation in acute spinal cord injury in rats, bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells were differentiated into oligodendrocyte-like cells induced by cytokines including insulin-like growth factor-1(IGF-1). Rats with acute spinal cord injury were treated with the oligodendrocyte-like cells for 8 weeks by local injection. The therapeutic effect was compared with oligodendrocytes transplantation and saline. Regeneration of axon myelin sheath and functional recovery of hind limbs were significantly improved after transplantation with oligodendrocyte-like cells than that with saline. But there was no significant difference between rats treated with oligodendrocyte-like cells and oligodendrocytes. Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells differentiating into oligodendrocyte-like cells can be induced by cytokines including IGF-1, with similar specific surface markers of oligodendrocytes. These cells can survive in injury sites of the spinal cord for a long duration after transplantation to improve recovery of neural function and reduce cavity area at injury site after acute spinal injury in rats. The possible mechanism may be regeneration of axon myelin sheath, which is helpful for reconstruction of neural reflex function.
Key words: Oligodendrocyte-like cells, differentiation, spinal cord injury, transplantation.
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