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, 2015, 235195

Oligodendrocyte Precursor Cells in Spinal Cord Injury: A Review and Update


Oligodendrocyte Precursor Cells in Spinal Cord Injury: A Review and Update

Ning Li et al. Biomed Res Int.


Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating condition to individuals, families, and society. Oligodendrocyte loss and demyelination contribute as major pathological processes of secondary damages after injury. Oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs), a subpopulation that accounts for 5 to 8% of cells within the central nervous system, are potential sources of oligodendrocyte replacement after SCI. OPCs react rapidly to injuries, proliferate at a high rate, and can differentiate into myelinating oligodendrocytes. However, posttraumatic endogenous remyelination is rarely complete, and a better understanding of OPCs' characteristics and their manipulations is critical to the development of novel therapies. In this review, we summarize known characteristics of OPCs and relevant regulative factors in both health and demyelinating disorders including SCI. More importantly, we highlight current evidence on post-SCI OPCs transplantation as a potential treatment option as well as the impediments against regeneration. Our aim is to shed lights on important knowledge gaps and to provoke thoughts for further researches and the development of therapeutic strategies.


Figure 1
Figure 1
The major pathophysiological phases after spinal cord injuries. BSCB: blood-spinal cord barrier; OLs: oligodendrocytes; ECM: extracelluar matrix; CSPGs: chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans.

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