Stem cell-paved biobridges facilitate stem transplant and host brain cell interactions for stroke therapy

Brain Res. 2015 Oct 14:1623:160-5. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2015.03.007. Epub 2015 Mar 11.


Distinguished by an infarct core encased within a penumbra, stroke remains a primary source of mortality within the United States. While our scientific knowledge regarding the pathology of stroke continues to improve, clinical treatment options for patients suffering from stroke are extremely limited. Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) remains the sole FDA-approved drug proven to be helpful following stroke. However, due to the need to administer the drug within 4.5h of stroke onset its usefulness is constrained to less than 5% of all patients suffering from ischemic stroke. One experimental therapy for the treatment of stroke involves the utilization of stem cells. Stem cell transplantation has been linked to therapeutic benefit by means of cell replacement and release of growth factors; however the precise means by which this is accomplished has not yet been clearly delineated. Using a traumatic brain injury model, we recently demonstrated the ability of transplanted mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) to form a biobridge connecting the area of injury to the neurogenic niche within the brain. We hypothesize that MSCs may also have the capacity to create a similar biobridge following stroke; thereby forming a conduit between the neurogenic niche and the stroke core and peri-infarct area. We propose that this biobridge could assist and promote interaction of host brain cells with transplanted stem cells and offer more opportunities to enhance the effectiveness of stem cell therapy in stroke. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Cell Interactions In Stroke.

Keywords: Ischemia; Mesenchymal stromal cell; Neural repair; Stem cell therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Brain / surgery
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation* / methods
  • Stroke / physiopathology*
  • Stroke / therapy*