The possibility of generating neural stem/precursor cells (NPCs) from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) has opened a new avenue of research that might nurture bench-to-bedside translation of cell transplantation protocols in central nervous system myelin disorders. Here we show that mouse iPSC-derived NPCs (miPSC-NPCs) - when intrathecally transplanted after disease onset - ameliorate clinical and pathological features of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, an animal model of multiple sclerosis. Transplanted miPSC-NPCs exert the neuroprotective effect not through cell replacement, but through the secretion of leukaemia inhibitory factor that promotes survival, differentiation and the remyelination capacity of both endogenous oligodendrocyte precursors and mature oligodendrocytes. The early preservation of tissue integrity limits blood-brain barrier damage and central nervous system infiltration of blood-borne encephalitogenic leukocytes, ultimately responsible for demyelination and axonal damage. While proposing a novel mechanism of action, our results further expand the therapeutic potential of NPCs derived from iPSCs in myelin disorders.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)