Abstract T MP17: Electrically Preconditioned Neural Stem Cells Improve Stroke Recovery
Background: Neural stem cells (NSCs) improve functional recovery after stroke, but the optimal method and conditions for delivery remain elusive. Tissue engineered scaffolds offer a unique method to manipulate and improve NSC function. We have developed a novel NSC delivery system utilizing an electrically conductive polymer scaffold to improve recovery and further elucidate repair mechanisms.
Methods: Human NSCs were seeded onto an electrically conductive polymer scaffold. Electrical fields were applied to the NSCs to electrically “precondition” the cells prior to transplantation. One day after in vitro stimulation, the polymer scaffold was implanted into a distal MCA occlusion rat model 1 week post stroke, and functional recovery was assessed weekly for 4 weeks post-transplantation using the vibrissae-paw test. Control groups included unstimulated NSCs on the polymer and polymer without cells. To assess how electrical stimulation altered the cells, we performed qPCR analysis of genes of interest in stimulated and unstimulated cells on the polymer, and on NSCs on a plastic petri dish.
Results: AC preconditioned NSCs improved the rate of neurologic functional recovery compared to unstimulated NSCs on the polymer (p<0.05) and significantly improved recovery compared to DC preconditioned cells and polymer alone (p<0.01). Preliminary results demonstrate that VEGF-A, -B and thrombospondin (TSP) -3 gene expression were upregulated in AC preconditioned cells compared to other groups.
Conclusions: Our results demonstrate that electrically preconditioned NSCs enhance stroke recovery. Gene expression of the thrombospondins (a family of matricellular proteins thought to be involved with angiogenesis and inflammation) and VEGF (proteins critical to angiogenesis) were found to be modified by electrically stimulating NSCs, suggesting possible mechanisms for functional recovery.
Author Disclosures: P. George: None. T.M. Bliss: None. S. Mehta: None. G. Sun: None. G.K. Steinberg: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.