Therapeutic effects of intranigral transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells in rat models of Parkinson's disease

J Neurosci Res. 2017 Mar;95(3):907-917. doi: 10.1002/jnr.23879. Epub 2016 Sep 12.


Stem cell transplantation is a promising tool for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease (PD); however, the therapeutic routes and mechanisms of mechanical approaches to stem cell transplantation must be explored. This study tests the therapeutic effect of transplantation of rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into the substantia nigra (SN) of the PD rat. 5-Bromo-2-deoxyuridine-labeled rat MSCs were transplanted into the SN of the 6-hydroxydopamine-injected side of PD rat brains. The behavioral changes in PD rats were examined before and 4 and 8 weeks after MSC transplantation. The expression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in the SN and the striatum and the survival and differentiation of MSCs were assessed by immunohistochemical and double immunofluorescence techniques. Abnormal behavior of PD rats was significantly improved by the administration of bone marrow MSCs, and the number of TH-positive cells in the SN and the optical density of TH-positive fibers in the striatum were markedly increased. Transplanted MSCs can survive and migrate in the brain and differentiate into nestin-, neuron-specific enolase-, and GFAP-positive cells. Our findings suggest that transplantation of rat bone marrow MSCs into the SN of PD rats may provide therapeutic effects. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Keywords: 6-hydroxydopamine; Parkinson's disease; bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells; differentiation; intranigral transplantation.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, CD / metabolism
  • Bromodeoxyuridine / metabolism
  • Cell Differentiation / physiology
  • Cell Movement
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein / metabolism
  • Male
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / physiology
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / metabolism
  • Nerve Fibers / metabolism
  • Nestin / metabolism
  • Oxidopamine / toxicity
  • Parkinson Disease, Secondary / chemically induced
  • Parkinson Disease, Secondary / surgery*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Substantia Nigra / surgery*
  • Sympatholytics / toxicity
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase / metabolism


  • Antigens, CD
  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins
  • Nestin
  • Sympatholytics
  • Oxidopamine
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase
  • Bromodeoxyuridine