Oral administration of inosine promotes recovery after experimental spinal cord injury in rat

Neurol Sci. 2014 Nov;35(11):1785-91. doi: 10.1007/s10072-014-1840-3. Epub 2014 Jun 10.


Inosine, a purine nucleoside, is one of the novel substances, which can preserve the neuronal and glial viability and stimulate intact neurons to extend axons. We, herein, evaluated the effect of oral inosine treatment on spinal cord injury (SCI) recovery by means of locomotor and bladder function, quantification of neurons and spinal cord tissue sparing. Rats after compression SCI were divided into groups-SCI-Aqua and SCI-Inosine (daily application of aqua for injection or inosine)-locomotion of hind limbs (BBB score) and urinary bladder function were evaluated from day 1 to 28 after SCI. The neuronal profile was determined by immunohistochemistry with NeuN antibodies and tissue sparing by Luxol fast blue staining method. SCI affected the functional movement of hind limbs in both groups with gradual improvement (increased BBB score) during survival. However, we found a significant difference in BBB score and recovery of bladder function between SCI-Aqua and SCI-Inosine groups during the second week of survival following SCI. In addition, the number of NeuN positive cells and percentage of tissue sparing was also significantly higher in SCI-Inosine group when compared with the SCI-Aqua group. Daily oral administration of inosine after SCI throughout the survival was beneficial for locomotion and micturition, neuronal survival and tissue sparing. This indicates that inosine may represent one of the co-stimulatory factors for treatment strategies to promote neuronal plasticity after SCI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Inosine / administration & dosage*
  • Male
  • Neuroprotective Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Recovery of Function / drug effects*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / drug therapy
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / physiopathology*


  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Inosine