Human spinal autografts of olfactory epithelial stem cells recapitulate donor site histology, maintaining proliferative and differentiation capacity many years after transplantation
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Many early trials are investigating neural stem cells (NSCs) and glia in spinal cord injury (SCI). One paradigm involves autologous transplant of olfactory mucosa (OM), containing NSCs and olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs). In preclinical SCI models, OM cells provide a scaffold for regenerating axons, facilitate remyelination, and even form new neurons [1, 4, 7]. Still, long-term persistence and differentiation of OM autografts in humans is undefined.
We evaluated two patients who underwent autologous OM transplant  (data collection performed in accordance with local Institutional Review Board policies). The first patient was seen 7 years after transplantation (Supplemental Table 1). Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) demonstrated a mass at the transplant site (Supplemental Fig. 1 a-b). A second patient was evaluated 5 years after OM transplantation with similar spinal mass (Supplemental Fig. 1 c-d), and demonstrated progressive arm pain and weakness. Given progressive...
KeywordsSpinal Cord Injury Stem Cell Marker Olfactory Epithelium Olfactory Mucosa Spinal Mass
This work was supported by grants from National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders DC011990 (JCM) and DC009606 (JRM), National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke R25NS089450 (KSC), and the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute (PGP).
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