Stem cell therapy for neonatal brain injury: Perspectives and Challenges

Authors

  • Luigi Titomanlio MD, PhD,

    1. Inserm, UMR-676, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
    2. Paris Diderot University, Diderot Medical School, Paris, France
    3. PremUP, Paris, France
    4. Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Pediatric Emergency Department, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
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  • Annemieke Kavelaars PhD,

    1. Laboratory of Neuroimmunology and Developmental Origins of Disease, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • Jeremie Dalous PhD,

    1. Inserm, UMR-676, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
    2. Paris Diderot University, Diderot Medical School, Paris, France
    3. PremUP, Paris, France
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  • Shyamala Mani PhD,

    1. Center for Neuroscience, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
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  • Vincent El Ghouzzi PhD,

    1. Inserm, UMR-676, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
    2. Paris Diderot University, Diderot Medical School, Paris, France
    3. PremUP, Paris, France
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  • Cobi Heijnen PhD,

    1. Laboratory of Neuroimmunology and Developmental Origins of Disease, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • Olivier Baud MD, PhD,

    1. Inserm, UMR-676, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
    2. Paris Diderot University, Diderot Medical School, Paris, France
    3. PremUP, Paris, France
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  • Pierre Gressens MD, PhD

    Corresponding author
    1. Inserm, UMR-676, Robert Debré Hospital, Paris, France
    2. Paris Diderot University, Diderot Medical School, Paris, France
    3. PremUP, Paris, France
    4. Centre for the Developing Brain, Imperial College, Hammersmith Campus, London, United Kingdom
    • Inserm U676, Hôpital Robert Debré, 48 blvd Serurier, F-75019 Paris, France
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Abstract

Cerebral palsy is a major health problem caused by brain damage during pregnancy, delivery, or the immediate postnatal period. Perinatal stroke, intraventricular hemorrhage, and asphyxia are the most common causes of neonatal brain damage. Periventricular white matter damage (periventricular leukomalacia) is the predominant form in premature infants and the most common antecedent of cerebral palsy. Stem cell treatment has proven effective in restoring injured organs and tissues in animal models. The potential of stem cells for self-renewal and differentiation translates into substantial neuroprotection and neuroregeneration in the animal brain, with minimal risks of rejection and side effects. Stem cell treatments described to date have used neural stem cells, embryonic stem cells, mesenchymal stem cells, umbilical cord stem cells, and induced pluripotent stem cells. Most of these treatments are still experimental. In this review, we focus on the efficacy of stem cell therapy in animal models of cerebral palsy, and discuss potential implications for current and future clinical trials. Ann Neurol 2011

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