J Neurotrauma. 2018 Jun 14.

Intravenous Infusion of Mesenchymal Stem Cells Alters Motor Cortex Gene Expression in a Rat Model of Acute Spinal Cord Injury.

Oshigiri T1, Sasaki T2, Sasaki M3, Kataoka-Sasaki Y4, Nakazaki M5, Oka S6, Morita T7, Hirota R8, Yoshimoto M9, Yamashita T10, Hashimoto-Torii K11, Honmou O12.

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Recent evidence has demonstrated that remote responses in the brain can be induced after spinal cord injury (SCI), as well as local responses in the injured spinal cord. Intravenous infusion of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has been shown to provide functional improvements in SCI through local therapeutic mechanisms that provide neuroprotection, stabilization of the blood-spinal cord barrier, remyelination, and axonal sprouting. In the present study, we examined the brain response that might be associated with the functional improvements induced by the infused MSCs after SCI. Genome-wide RNA profiling was performed in the motor cortex of SCI rats at 3 days post-MSC or vehicle infusion. Then, qRT-PCR data revealed that the "behaviorally-associated differentially expressed genes (DEGs)" were identified with behavioral function, suggesting that the "behaviorally-associated DEGs" may be related to the functional recovery after systemic infusion of MSCs in SCI. These results suggested that the infused MSCs alter the gene expression signature in the brain and that these expression changes may contribute to the improved function in SCI.