Introduction: Stem cell therapy is one of the most promising therapies for degenerative diseases and related injuries. Adipose tissue derived stem cells (ADSCs) exhibit some particular properties such as high production of paracrine factors. Indeed, ADSCs have been successfully used to treat diseases, including osteoarthritis, diabetic ulcer, etc.
Methods: In this study, ADSCs were used to treat spinal cord injury (SCI) in a mouse model. Non-expanded ADSCs, from stromal vascular fractions (SVFs) isolated from both autologous and allogeneic adipose tissues, were injected into injured sites of mice at a specified dose. The SCI mouse model were generated by transection of spinal cord at vertebrae T8 – T10. After 1 week of transection, mice exhibiting completed SCI were divided into 4 groups: group 1 was control (mice without any treatment), group 2 was placebo (mice treated with platelet rich plasma (PRP)), group 3 was allogeneic SVF transplantation (mice treated with allogeneic SVFs), and group 4 was autologous SVF transplantation (mice treated with autologous SVFs). For the treatment groups, mice were transplanted with 20 µL of activated PRP or/and with 106 cells of SVF (allogeneic or autologous) into the injured position through laminectomy. The recovery of SCI was evaluated by locomotor test, sensory test and sensory-motor test at 5 weeks after transplantation. The histology of the spinal cord also was checked after 5 weeks.
Results: The results showed that in all groups with PRP injected with or without SVFs, the inflammation was efficiently controlled. The glial scar as well as myelin defragmentation were clearly reduced. However, a significant improvement of BBB score was only recorded in mice transplanted with autologous SVFs.
Conclusion: The results of our study show that autologous SVF transplantation in combination with PRP can be a promising therapy for SCI.