Attachment of stem cells to scaffold particles for intra-cerebral transplantation

Nat Protoc. 2009;4(10):1440-53. doi: 10.1038/nprot.2009.156. Epub 2009 Sep 17.


Cell-replacement therapy and tissue regeneration using stem cells are of great interest to recover histological damage caused by neuro-degenerative disease or traumatic insults to the brain. To date, the main intra-cerebral delivery for these cells has been as a suspension in media through a thin needle. However, this does not provide cells with a support system that would allow tissue regeneration. Scaffold particles are needed to provide structural support to cells to form de novo tissue. In this 16-d protocol, we describe the generation and functionalization of poly (D,L-lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) particles to enhance cell attachment, the attachment procedure to avoid clumping and aggregation of cells and particles, and their preparation for intra-cerebral injection through a thin needle. Although the stem cell-scaffold transplantation is more complicated and labor-intensive than cell suspensions, it affords de novo tissue generation inside the brain and hence provides a significant step forward in traumatic brain repair.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell- and Tissue-Based Therapy
  • Cerebrum / cytology*
  • Cerebrum / surgery
  • Fibronectins / chemistry
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*
  • Surface Properties
  • Tissue Scaffolds*


  • Fibronectins