Nanotechnology in regenerative medicine of the brain and spinal cord
The use of nanotechnology in cell therapy and tissue engineering offers promising future perspectives for treatment of brain and spinal cord injury. Stem cells have been shown to selectively target injured brain and spinal cord tissue and improve functional recovery. To allow cell detection, nanoparticles based on a superparamagnetic iron-oxide core or gadolinium complexes can be used to label transplanted cells. MRI is then a suitable method for the in vivo tracking of grafted cells in the host organism. In addition, nanoparticles based on a perovskite core can be used for tumor thermoablation. To improve MR imaging and labeling efficiency when compared to commercial contrast agents, superparamagnetic iron-oxide nanoparticles can be modified with different coatings (Poly-L-lysin, D-mannose, polydimethylacrylamid). CNS, and particularly spinal cord, injury is accompanied by tissue damage and the formation of physical and biochemical barriers that prevent axons from regenerating. One aspect of nanomedicine is the development of biologically compatible nanofiber or polymer scaffolds that mimic the structure of the extracellular matrix and can serve as a permissive bridge for axonal regeneration or as a drug-delivery system. These scaffolds, when implanted into acute or chronic spinal cord injury, provide a suitable environment not only for axonal ingrowth, but also for the growth of blood vessels and Schwann cells myelinating the axons. The incorporation of biologically active epitopes and/ or the utilization of these scaffolds as stem cell carriers may further enhance their therapeutic efficacy. Supported by AV0Z50390703, GACR203/06/1242, 1M0538, LC554 and IAA 500390902.
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