The application of hydrogels to spinal cord injury

Weikang Ma, Feng Li, Shuqing Tao, Leila Mansour

Abstract


Spinal cord injuries (SCI) are very traumatic to the body; they can lead to permanent loss of motor and sensation. The injury also causes inflammation and the formation of glial scars, which inhibit neurite growth. It is thus very difficult to treat SCI’s due to the inhospitable environment at and around the lesion site. This paper explores hydrogels as a desired tool for treating SCI’s due to their ability to mimic the structure of the extracellular matrix (ECM), which supports cells and promotes their proliferation migration differentiation, as well as their ability to guide implanting neural tissue to restore and replace damaged tissue. The implantation of cells and molecules via hydrogels is promising and has been explored for SCI regeneration.


Keywords


Spinal cord injury; hydrogels; tissue regeneration; cell-based transportation; molecule-based transportation.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18088/ejbmr.2.1.2016.pp57-62