Concise Review: Laying the Groundwork for a First-In-Human Study of an Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Based Intervention for Spinal Cord Injury

Stem Cells. 2019 Jan;37(1):6-13. doi: 10.1002/stem.2926. Epub 2018 Nov 12.


There have been numerous attempts to develop stem cell transplantation approaches to promote the regeneration of spinal cord injury (SCI). Our multicenter team is currently planning to launch a first-in-human clinical study of an induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-based cell transplant intervention for subacute SCI. This trial was conducted as class I regenerative medicine protocol as provided for under Japan's Act on the Safety of Regenerative Medicine, using neural stem/progenitor cells derived from a clinical-grade, integration-free human "iPSC stock" generated by the Kyoto University Center for iPS Cell Research and Application. In the present article, we describe how we are preparing to initiate this clinical study, including addressing the issues of safety and tumorigenesis as well as practical problems that must be overcome to enable the development of therapeutic interventions for patients with chronic SCI. Stem Cells 2019;37:6-13.

Keywords: Cell transplantation; Clinical trials; Induced pluripotent stem cells; Spinal cord injury.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / transplantation*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / therapy*
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*