Fate of autologous dermal stem cells transplanted into the spinal cord after traumatic injury (TSCI)

A. Gorio, Y. Torrente, L. Madaschi, A. B. Di Stefano, F. Pisati, C. Marchesi, M. Belicchi, A. M. Di Giulio, N. Bresolin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Rat dermis is a source of cells capable of growing in vitro and, in appropriate conditions, forming floating spheres constituted by nestin-positive cells. We have clonally grown these spheres up to the 15th generation. These spheres can be dissociated into cells that differentiate in vitro under appropriate conditions, these cells are labeled by antibodies to immature neuron markers such as nestin and β-tubulin III and, later, to mature neuron markers such as microtubule-associated protein 2 and neurofilaments. However, most cells are positive to the astroglial marker glia fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). When sphere-derived cells are transplanted into the spinal cord after traumatic injury, their migration into the lesion cavity is optimal but their differentiation is dependent upon the time interval between lesioning and cell transplantation. Injection of skin-derived stem cell within 30 min from injury yields mainly membrane activated complex-1 (MAC-1), cluster of differentiation-4 (CD-4) and CD-8 positive cells, that 60-90 days later undergo apoptosis. However, when transplantation is performed 7 days after injury, most cells (65% of total) are positive to staining with antibodies to GFAP, others (16%) to neurofilaments, and a smaller amount (2%) to the endothelial marker, platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule. Thus our study shows that delayed transplantations of dermis-derived stem cells yield healthy cells that do not die, migrate to the lesion site, and there differentiate mainly in cells expressing glia and neuronal markers. On the other hand there is the possibility of dye transfer from labeled cells to endogenous cells, and this might influence the data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-189
Number of pages11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • Basic fibroblast growth factor
  • Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan
  • BBB
  • BFGF
  • CD-4
  • CD-8
  • Cluster of differentiation-4
  • Cluster of differentiation-8
  • DSC
  • Recovery from disability
  • Stem cell differentiation
  • Stem cell migration
  • Timing of transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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