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Sample records for spinal cord plasticity

  1. Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch Therapy on Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-12-1-0587 TITLE: Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch ...Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch Therapy on Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury. 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-12-1...ABSTRACT Essentially all spinal cord injured patients receive stretching therapies beginning within the first few weeks post-injury. Despite

  2. Neural plasticity after spinal cord injury☆

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jian; Yang, Xiaoyu; Jiang, Lianying; Wang, Chunxin; Yang, Maoguang

    2012-01-01

    Plasticity changes of uninjured nerves can result in a novel neural circuit after spinal cord injury, which can restore sensory and motor functions to different degrees. Although processes of neural plasticity have been studied, the mechanism and treatment to effectively improve neural plasticity changes remain controversial. The present study reviewed studies regarding plasticity of the central nervous system and methods for promoting plasticity to improve repair of injured central nerves. The results showed that synaptic reorganization, axonal sprouting, and neurogenesis are critical factors for neural circuit reconstruction. Directed functional exercise, neurotrophic factor and transplantation of nerve-derived and non-nerve-derived tissues and cells can effectively ameliorate functional disturbances caused by spinal cord injury and improve quality of life for patients. PMID:25774179

  3. Dual Cortical Plasticity After Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Humanes-Valera, Desire; Foffani, Guglielmo; Alonso-Calviño, Elena; Fernández-López, Elena; Aguilar, Juan

    2017-05-01

    During cortical development, plasticity reflects the dynamic equilibrium between increasing and decreasing functional connectivity subserved by synaptic sprouting and pruning. After adult cortical deafferentation, plasticity seems to be dominated by increased functional connectivity, leading to the classical expansive reorganization from the intact to the deafferented cortex. In contrast, here we show a striking "decrease" in the fast cortical responses to high-intensity forepaw stimulation 1-3 months after complete thoracic spinal cord transection, as evident in both local field potentials and intracellular in vivo recordings. Importantly, this decrease in fast cortical responses co-exists with an "increase" in cortical activation over slower post-stimulus timescales, as measured by an increased forepaw-to-hindpaw propagation of stimulus-triggered cortical up-states, as well as by the enhanced slow sustained depolarization evoked by high-frequency forepaw stimuli in the deafferented hindpaw cortex. This coincidence of diminished fast cortical responses and enhanced slow cortical activation offers a dual perspective of adult cortical plasticity after spinal cord injury. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Maladaptive spinal plasticity opposes spinal learning and recovery in spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Ferguson, Adam R.; Huie, J. Russell; Crown, Eric D.; Baumbauer, Kyle M.; Hook, Michelle A.; Garraway, Sandra M.; Lee, Kuan H.; Hoy, Kevin C.; Grau, James W.

    2012-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity within the spinal cord has great potential to facilitate recovery of function after spinal cord injury (SCI). Spinal plasticity can be induced in an activity-dependent manner even without input from the brain after complete SCI. A mechanistic basis for these effects is provided by research demonstrating that spinal synapses have many of the same plasticity mechanisms that are known to underlie learning and memory in the brain. In addition, the lumbar spinal cord can sustain several forms of learning and memory, including limb-position training. However, not all spinal plasticity promotes recovery of function. Central sensitization of nociceptive (pain) pathways in the spinal cord may emerge in response to various noxious inputs, demonstrating that plasticity within the spinal cord may contribute to maladaptive pain states. In this review we discuss interactions between adaptive and maladaptive forms of activity-dependent plasticity in the spinal cord below the level of SCI. The literature demonstrates that activity-dependent plasticity within the spinal cord must be carefully tuned to promote adaptive spinal training. Prior work from our group has shown that stimulation that is delivered in a limb position-dependent manner or on a fixed interval can induce adaptive plasticity that promotes future spinal cord learning and reduces nociceptive hyper-reactivity. On the other hand, stimulation that is delivered in an unsynchronized fashion, such as randomized electrical stimulation or peripheral skin injuries, can generate maladaptive spinal plasticity that undermines future spinal cord learning, reduces recovery of locomotor function, and promotes nociceptive hyper-reactivity after SCI. We review these basic phenomena, how these findings relate to the broader spinal plasticity literature, discuss the cellular and molecular mechanisms, and finally discuss implications of these and other findings for improved rehabilitative therapies after SCI. PMID

  5. Shoulder biomechanics and muscle plasticity: implications in spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Lee, Thay Q; McMahon, Patrick J

    2002-10-01

    After spinal cord injury, excessive burden falls on the upper extremity, especially the shoulder. Overall, 51% of persons with spinal cord injury have shoulder problems. Common shoulder problems in persons with spinal cord injury begin with muscle imbalance that can lead to glenohumeral instability, impingement disease, rotator cuff tears, and subsequent degenerative joint disease. These problems can be attributed to the functional demands placed on the shoulder that are specific to patients with spinal cord injury, including overhead activities, wheelchair use, and transfers. Despite preventive exercises, shoulder problems in persons with spinal cord injury remain a significant problem, causing pain and functional limitations. The biomechanics of the shoulder for persons with spinal cord injury resulting from changes in muscle plasticity will be elucidated. Specifically, the effects of scapular protraction that can result from muscle imbalance, the age-dependent properties of the anterior band of the inferior glenohumeral ligament, and the influence of the dynamic restraints around the shoulder will be addressed.

  6. Corticospinal circuit plasticity in motor rehabilitation from spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Serradj, Najet; Agger, Sydney F; Hollis, Edmund R

    2016-12-06

    Restoring corticospinal function after spinal cord injury is a significant challenge as the corticospinal tract elicits no substantive, spontaneous regeneration, and its interruption leaves a permanent deficit. The corticospinal circuit serves multiple motor and sensory functions within the mammalian nervous system as the direct link between isocortex and spinal cord. Maturation of the corticospinal circuit involves the refinement of projections within the spinal cord and a subsequent refinement of motor maps within the cortex. The plasticity of these cortical motor maps mirrors the acquisition of skilled motor learning, and both the maps and motor skills are disrupted following injury to the corticospinal tract. The motor cortex exhibits the capacity to incorporate changes in corticospinal projections induced by both spontaneous and therapeutic-mediated plasticity of corticospinal axons through appropriate rehabilitation. An understanding of the mechanisms of corticospinal plasticity in motor learning will undoubtedly help inform strategies to improve motor rehabilitation after spinal cord injury.

  7. Nociceptive plasticity inhibits adaptive learning in the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, A R; Crown, E D; Grau, J W

    2006-08-11

    Spinal plasticity is known to play a role in central neurogenic pain. Over the last 100 years researchers have found that the spinal cord is also capable of supporting other forms of plasticity including several forms of learning. To study instrumental (response-outcome) learning in the spinal cord, we use a preparation in which spinally transected rats are given shock to the hind leg when the leg is extended. The spinal cord rapidly learns to hold the leg in a flexed position when given this controllable shock. However, if shock is independent of leg position (uncontrollable shock), subjects fail to learn. Uncontrollable shock also impairs future learning. As little as 6 min of uncontrollable shock to either the leg or the tail generates a learning deficit that lasts up to 48 h. Recent data suggest links between the learning deficit and the sensitization of pain circuits associated with inflammation or injury (central sensitization). Here, we explored whether central sensitization and the spinal learning deficit share pharmacological and behavioral features. Central sensitization enhances reactivity to mechanical stimulation (allodynia) and depends on the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR). The uncontrollable shock stimulus that generates a learning deficit produced a tactile allodynia (Exp. 1) and administration of the NMDAR antagonist MK-801 blocked induction of the learning deficit (Exp. 2). Finally, a treatment known to induce central sensitization, intradermal carrageenan, produced a spinal learning deficit (Exp. 3). The findings suggest that the induction of central sensitization inhibits selective response modifications.

  8. Plasticity of the Injured Human Spinal Cord: Insights Revealed by Spinal Cord Functional MRI

    PubMed Central

    Cadotte, David W.; Bosma, Rachael; Mikulis, David; Nugaeva, Natalia; Smith, Karen; Pokrupa, Ronald; Islam, Omar; Stroman, Patrick W.; Fehlings, Michael G.

    2012-01-01

    Introduction While numerous studies have documented evidence for plasticity of the human brain there is little evidence that the human spinal cord can change after injury. Here, we employ a novel spinal fMRI design where we stimulate normal and abnormal sensory dermatomes in persons with traumatic spinal cord injury and perform a connectivity analysis to understand how spinal networks process information. Methods Spinal fMRI data was collected at 3 Tesla at two institutions from 38 individuals using the standard SEEP functional MR imaging techniques. Thermal stimulation was applied to four dermatomes in an interleaved timing pattern during each fMRI acquisition. SCI patients were stimulated in dermatomes both above (normal sensation) and below the level of their injury. Sub-group analysis was performed on healthy controls (n = 20), complete SCI (n = 3), incomplete SCI (n = 9) and SCI patients who recovered full function (n = 6). Results Patients with chronic incomplete SCI, when stimulated in a dermatome of normal sensation, showed an increased number of active voxels relative to controls (p = 0.025). There was an inverse relationship between the degree of sensory impairment and the number of active voxels in the region of the spinal cord corresponding to that dermatome of abnormal sensation (R2 = 0.93, p<0.001). Lastly, a connectivity analysis demonstrated a significantly increased number of intraspinal connections in incomplete SCI patients relative to controls suggesting altered processing of afferent sensory signals. Conclusions In this work we demonstrate the use of spinal fMRI to investigate changes in spinal processing of somatosensory information in the human spinal cord. We provide evidence for plasticity of the human spinal cord after traumatic injury based on an increase in the average number of active voxels in dermatomes of normal sensation in chronic SCI patients and an increased number of intraspinal connections in incomplete

  9. Central nociceptive sensitization vs. spinal cord training: opposing forms of plasticity that dictate function after complete spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Ferguson, Adam R.; Huie, J. Russell; Crown, Eric D.; Grau, James W.

    2012-01-01

    The spinal cord demonstrates several forms of plasticity that resemble brain-dependent learning and memory. Among the most studied form of spinal plasticity is spinal memory for noxious (nociceptive) stimulation. Numerous papers have described central pain as a spinally-stored memory that enhances future responses to cutaneous stimulation. This phenomenon, known as central sensitization, has broad relevance to a range of pathological conditions. Work from the spinal cord injury (SCI) field indicates that the lumbar spinal cord demonstrates several other forms of plasticity, including formal learning and memory. After complete thoracic SCI, the lumbar spinal cord can be trained by delivering stimulation to the hindleg when the leg is extended. In the presence of this response-contingent stimulation the spinal cord rapidly learns to hold the leg in a flexed position, a centrally mediated effect that meets the formal criteria for instrumental (response-outcome) learning. Instrumental flexion training produces a central change in spinal plasticity that enables future spinal learning on both the ipsilateral and contralateral leg. However, if stimulation is given in a response-independent manner, the spinal cord develops central maladaptive plasticity that undermines future spinal learning on both legs. The present paper tests for interactions between spinal cord training and central nociceptive sensitization after complete spinal cord transection. We found that spinal training alters future central sensitization by intradermal formalin (24 h post-training). Conversely intradermal formalin impaired future spinal learning (24 h post-injection). Because formalin-induced central sensitization has been shown to involve NMDA receptor activation, we tested whether pre-treatment with NMDA would also affect spinal learning in manner similar to formalin. We found intrathecal NMDA impaired learning in a dose-dependent fashion, and that this effect endures for at least 24 h. These

  10. Peripheral inflammation undermines the plasticity of the isolated spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Hook, Michelle A; Huie, John R; Grau, James W

    2008-02-01

    Peripheral capsaicin treatment induces molecular changes that sensitize the responses of nociceptive neurons in the spinal dorsal horn. The current studies demonstrate that capsaicin also undermines the adaptive plasticity of the spinal cord, rendering the system incapable of learning a simple instrumental task. In these studies, male rats are transected at the second thoracic vertebra and are tested 24 to 48 hours later. During testing, subjects receive shock to one hindleg when it is extended (controllable stimulation). Rats quickly learn to maintain the leg in a flexed position. Rats that have been injected with capsaicin (1% or 3%) in the hindpaw fail to learn, even when tested on the leg contralateral to the injection. This learning deficit lasts at least 24 hours. Interestingly, training with controllable electrical stimulation prior to capsaicin administration protects the spinal cord against the maladaptive effects. Rats pretrained with controllable stimulation do not display a learning deficit or tactile allodynia. Moreover, controllable stimulation, combined with naltrexone, reverses the capsaicin-induced deficit. These data suggest that peripheral inflammation, accompanying spinal cord injuries, might have an adverse effect on recovery. Copyright (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved.

  11. Synaptic Plasticity, Neurogenesis, and Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Darian-Smith, Corinna

    2010-01-01

    Spinal cord injury research has greatly expanded in recent years, but our understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the functional recovery that can occur over the weeks and months following the initial injury, is far from complete. To grasp the scope of the problem, it is important to begin by defining the sensorimotor pathways that might be involved by a spinal injury. This is done in the rodent and nonhuman primate, which are two of the most commonly used animal models in basic and translational spinal injury research. Many of the better known experimentally induced models are then reviewed in terms of the pathways they involve and the reorganization and recovery that have been shown to follow. The better understood neuronal mechanisms mediating such post-injury plasticity, including dendritic spine growth and axonal sprouting, are then examined. PMID:19307422

  12. Simultaneous Brain-Cervical Cord fMRI Reveals Intrinsic Spinal Cord Plasticity during Motor Sequence Learning.

    PubMed

    Vahdat, Shahabeddin; Lungu, Ovidiu; Cohen-Adad, Julien; Marchand-Pauvert, Veronique; Benali, Habib; Doyon, Julien

    2015-06-01

    The spinal cord participates in the execution of skilled movements by translating high-level cerebral motor representations into musculotopic commands. Yet, the extent to which motor skill acquisition relies on intrinsic spinal cord processes remains unknown. To date, attempts to address this question were limited by difficulties in separating spinal local effects from supraspinal influences through traditional electrophysiological and neuroimaging methods. Here, for the first time, we provide evidence for local learning-induced plasticity in intact human spinal cord through simultaneous functional magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and spinal cord during motor sequence learning. Specifically, we show learning-related modulation of activity in the C6-C8 spinal region, which is independent from that of related supraspinal sensorimotor structures. Moreover, a brain-spinal cord functional connectivity analysis demonstrates that the initial linear relationship between the spinal cord and sensorimotor cortex gradually fades away over the course of motor sequence learning, while the connectivity between spinal activity and cerebellum gains strength. These data suggest that the spinal cord not only constitutes an active functional component of the human motor learning network but also contributes distinctively from the brain to the learning process. The present findings open new avenues for rehabilitation of patients with spinal cord injuries, as they demonstrate that this part of the central nervous system is much more plastic than assumed before. Yet, the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying this intrinsic functional plasticity in the spinal cord warrant further investigations.

  13. Simultaneous Brain–Cervical Cord fMRI Reveals Intrinsic Spinal Cord Plasticity during Motor Sequence Learning

    PubMed Central

    Cohen-Adad, Julien; Marchand-Pauvert, Veronique; Benali, Habib; Doyon, Julien

    2015-01-01

    The spinal cord participates in the execution of skilled movements by translating high-level cerebral motor representations into musculotopic commands. Yet, the extent to which motor skill acquisition relies on intrinsic spinal cord processes remains unknown. To date, attempts to address this question were limited by difficulties in separating spinal local effects from supraspinal influences through traditional electrophysiological and neuroimaging methods. Here, for the first time, we provide evidence for local learning-induced plasticity in intact human spinal cord through simultaneous functional magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and spinal cord during motor sequence learning. Specifically, we show learning-related modulation of activity in the C6–C8 spinal region, which is independent from that of related supraspinal sensorimotor structures. Moreover, a brain–spinal cord functional connectivity analysis demonstrates that the initial linear relationship between the spinal cord and sensorimotor cortex gradually fades away over the course of motor sequence learning, while the connectivity between spinal activity and cerebellum gains strength. These data suggest that the spinal cord not only constitutes an active functional component of the human motor learning network but also contributes distinctively from the brain to the learning process. The present findings open new avenues for rehabilitation of patients with spinal cord injuries, as they demonstrate that this part of the central nervous system is much more plastic than assumed before. Yet, the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying this intrinsic functional plasticity in the spinal cord warrant further investigations. PMID:26125597

  14. Supraspinal respiratory plasticity following acute cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Bezdudnaya, Tatiana; Marchenko, Vitaliy; Zholudeva, Lyandysha V; Spruance, Victoria M; Lane, Michael A

    2017-07-01

    Impaired breathing is a devastating result of high cervical spinal cord injuries (SCI) due to partial or full denervation of phrenic motoneurons, which innervate the diaphragm - a primary muscle of respiration. Consequently, people with cervical level injuries often become dependent on assisted ventilation and are susceptible to secondary complications. However, there is mounting evidence for limited spontaneous recovery of respiratory function following injury, demonstrating the neuroplastic potential of respiratory networks. Although many studies have shown such plasticity at the level of the spinal cord, much less is known about the changes occurring at supraspinal levels post-SCI. The goal of this study was to determine functional reorganization of respiratory neurons in the medulla acutely (>4h) following high cervical SCI. Experiments were conducted in decerebrate, unanesthetized, vagus intact and artificially ventilated rats. In this preparation, spontaneous recovery of ipsilateral phrenic nerve activity was observed within 4 to 6h following an incomplete, C2 hemisection (C2Hx). Electrophysiological mapping of the ventrolateral medulla showed a reorganization of inspiratory and expiratory sites ipsilateral to injury. These changes included i) decreased respiratory activity within the caudal ventral respiratory group (cVRG; location of bulbospinal expiratory neurons); ii) increased proportion of expiratory phase activity within the rostral ventral respiratory group (rVRG; location of inspiratory bulbo-spinal neurons); iii) increased respiratory activity within ventral reticular nuclei, including lateral reticular (LRN) and paragigantocellular (LPGi) nuclei. We conclude that disruption of descending and ascending connections between the medulla and spinal cord leads to immediate functional reorganization within the supraspinal respiratory network, including neurons within the ventral respiratory column and adjacent reticular nuclei. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier

  15. Spinal Plasticity and Behavior: BDNF-Induced Neuromodulation in Uninjured and Injured Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Huie, J. Russell

    2016-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a member of the neurotrophic factor family of signaling molecules. Since its discovery over three decades ago, BDNF has been identified as an important regulator of neuronal development, synaptic transmission, and cellular and synaptic plasticity and has been shown to function in the formation and maintenance of certain forms of memory. Neural plasticity that underlies learning and memory in the hippocampus shares distinct characteristics with spinal cord nociceptive plasticity. Research examining the role BDNF plays in spinal nociception and pain overwhelmingly suggests that BDNF promotes pronociceptive effects. BDNF induces synaptic facilitation and engages central sensitization-like mechanisms. Also, peripheral injury-induced neuropathic pain is often accompanied with increased spinal expression of BDNF. Research has extended to examine how spinal cord injury (SCI) influences BDNF plasticity and the effects BDNF has on sensory and motor functions after SCI. Functional recovery and adaptive plasticity after SCI are typically associated with upregulation of BDNF. Although neuropathic pain is a common consequence of SCI, the relation between BDNF and pain after SCI remains elusive. This article reviews recent literature and discusses the diverse actions of BDNF. We also highlight similarities and differences in BDNF-induced nociceptive plasticity in naïve and SCI conditions. PMID:27721996

  16. Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch Therapy on Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    Louisville, KY After spinal cord injury (SCI) patients commonly develop spasticity and contractures as secondary complications of “upper motor neuron...lesions. Physical therapists use stretching maneuvers to maintain extensibility of soft tissues and to manage spasticity . Previous studies in our lab

  17. Plasticity and Recovery After Dorsal Column Spinal Cord Injury in Nonhuman Primates

    PubMed Central

    Reed, Jamie L.; Liao, Chia-Chi; Qi, Hui-Xin; Kaas, Jon H.

    2016-01-01

    Here, we review recent work on plasticity and recovery after dorsal column spinal cord injury in nonhuman primates. Plasticity in the adult central nervous system has been established and studied for the past several decades; however, capacities and limits of plasticity are still under investigation. Studies of plasticity include assessing multiple measures before and after injury in animal models. Such studies are particularly important for improving recovery after injury in patients. In summarizing work by our research team and others, we suggest how the findings from plasticity studies in nonhuman primate models may affect therapeutic interventions for conditions involving sensory loss due to spinal cord injury. PMID:27578996

  18. Plasticity and Recovery After Dorsal Column Spinal Cord Injury in Nonhuman Primates.

    PubMed

    Reed, Jamie L; Liao, Chia-Chi; Qi, Hui-Xin; Kaas, Jon H

    2016-01-01

    Here, we review recent work on plasticity and recovery after dorsal column spinal cord injury in nonhuman primates. Plasticity in the adult central nervous system has been established and studied for the past several decades; however, capacities and limits of plasticity are still under investigation. Studies of plasticity include assessing multiple measures before and after injury in animal models. Such studies are particularly important for improving recovery after injury in patients. In summarizing work by our research team and others, we suggest how the findings from plasticity studies in nonhuman primate models may affect therapeutic interventions for conditions involving sensory loss due to spinal cord injury.

  19. Learning from the spinal cord: How the study of spinal cord plasticity informs our view of learning

    PubMed Central

    Grau, James W.

    2013-01-01

    The paper reviews research examining whether and how training can induce a lasting change in spinal cord function. A framework for the study of learning, and some essential issues in experimental design, are discussed. A core element involves delayed assessment under common conditions. Research has shown that brain systems can induce a lasting (memory-like) alteration in spinal function. Neurons within the lower (lumbosacral) spinal cord can also adapt when isolated from the brain by means of a thoracic transection. Using traditional learning paradigms, evidence suggests that spinal neurons support habituation and sensitization as well as Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning. At a neurobiological level, spinal systems support phenomena (e.g., long-term potentiation), and involve mechanisms (e.g., NMDA mediated plasticity, protein synthesis) implicated in brain-dependent learning and memory. Spinal learning also induces modulatory effects that alter the capacity for learning. Uncontrollable/unpredictable stimulation disables the capacity for instrumental learning and this effect has been linked to the cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF). Predictable/controllable stimulation enables learning and counters the adverse effects of uncontrollable simulation through a process that depends upon brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Finally, uncontrollable, but not controllable, nociceptive stimulation impairs recovery after a contusion injury. A process-oriented approach (neurofunctionalism) is outlined that encourages a broader view of learning phenomena. PMID:23973905

  20. Motor Cortex Stimulation Reverses Maladaptive Plasticity Following Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-01

    P, Eccles JC, Sears TA (1962) Presynaptic inhibitory action of cerebral cortex on the spinal cord. Nature 194:740–741. Davoody L, Quiton RL, Lucas...metabolites of interest such as g-aminobutyric acid, glutamine, glutamate, myo-inositol, N-acetylaspartate, taurine , glycerophosphorylcholine/phos...acetylaspartate, NAAG ¼ N-acetylaspartylglutamate, tCho ¼ glycerophosphocholine þ phosphocholine, Tau ¼ taurine , M1 ¼ macromolecule at 0.92 ppm, M2

  1. Axon regeneration and exercise-dependent plasticity after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Houle, John D; Côté, Marie-Pascale

    2013-03-01

    Current dogma states that meaningful recovery of function after spinal cord injury (SCI) will likely require a combination of therapeutic interventions comprised of regenerative/neuroprotective transplants, addition of neurotrophic factors, elimination of inhibitory molecules, functional sensorimotor training, and/or stimulation of paralyzed muscles or spinal circuits. We routinely use (1) peripheral nerve grafts to support and direct axonal regeneration across an incomplete cervical or complete thoracic transection injury, (2) matrix modulation with chondroitinase (ChABC) to facilitate axonal extension beyond the distal graft-spinal cord interface, and (3) exercise, such as forced wheel walking, bicycling, or step training on a treadmill. We and others have demonstrated an increase in spinal cord levels of endogenous neurotrophic factors with exercise, which may be useful in facilitating elongation and/or synaptic activity of regenerating axons and plasticity of spinal neurons below the level of injury. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

  2. Why New Spinal Cord Plasticity Does Not Disrupt Old Motor Behaviors.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yi; Chen, Lu; Wang, Yu; Chen, Xiang Yang; Wolpaw, Jonathan R

    2017-08-23

    When new motor learning changes the spinal cord, old behaviors are not impaired; their key features are preserved by additional compensatory plasticity. To explore the mechanisms responsible for this compensatory plasticity, we transected the spinal dorsal ascending tract before or after female rats acquired a new behavior-operantly conditioned increase or decrease in the right soleus H-reflex-and examined an old behavior-locomotion. Neither spinal dorsal ascending tract transection nor H-reflex conditioning alone impaired locomotion. Nevertheless, when spinal dorsal ascending tract transection and H-reflex conditioning were combined, the rats developed a limp and a tilted posture that correlated in direction and magnitude with the H-reflex change. When the right H-reflex was increased by conditioning, the right step lasted longer than the left and the right hip was higher than the left; when the right H-reflex was decreased by conditioning, the opposite occurred. These results indicate that ascending sensory input guides the compensatory plasticity that normally prevents the plasticity underlying H-reflex change from impairing locomotion. They support the concept of the state of the spinal cord as a negotiated equilibrium that reflects the concurrent influences of all the behaviors in an individual's repertoire; and they support the new therapeutic strategies this concept introduces.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The spinal cord provides a reliable final common pathway for motor behaviors throughout life. Until recently, its reliability was explained by the assumption that it is hardwired; but it is now clear that the spinal cord changes continually as new behaviors are acquired. Nevertheless, old behaviors are preserved. This study shows that their preservation depends on sensory feedback from the spinal cord to the brain: if feedback is removed, the acquisition of a new behavior may disrupt an old behavior. In sum, when a new behavior changes the spinal cord, sensory

  3. Plasticity in reflex pathways to the lower urinary tract following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    de Groat, William C; Yoshimura, Naoki

    2012-05-01

    The lower urinary tract has two main functions, storage and periodic expulsion of urine, that are regulated by a complex neural control system in the brain and lumbosacral spinal cord. This neural system coordinates the activity of two functional units in the lower urinary tract: (1) a reservoir (the urinary bladder) and (2) an outlet (consisting of bladder neck, urethra and striated muscles of the external urethra sphincter). During urine storage the outlet is closed and the bladder is quiescent to maintain a low intravesical pressure. During micturition the outlet relaxes and the bladder contracts to promote efficient release of urine. This reciprocal relationship between bladder and outlet is generated by reflex circuits some of which are under voluntary control. Experimental studies in animals indicate that the micturition reflex is mediated by a spinobulbospinal pathway passing through a coordination center (the pontine micturition center) located in the rostral brainstem. This reflex pathway is in turn modulated by higher centers in the cerebral cortex that are involved in the voluntary control of micturition. Spinal cord injury at cervical or thoracic levels disrupts voluntary control of voiding as well as the normal reflex pathways that coordinate bladder and sphincter function. Following spinal cord injury the bladder is initially areflexic but then becomes hyperreflexic due to the emergence of a spinal micturition reflex pathway. However the bladder does not empty efficiently because coordination between the bladder and urethral outlet is lost. Studies in animals indicate that dysfunction of the lower urinary tract after spinal cord injury is dependent in part on plasticity of bladder afferent pathways as well as reorganization of synaptic connections in the spinal cord. Reflex plasticity is associated with changes in the properties of ion channels and electrical excitability of afferent neurons and appears to be mediated in part by neurotrophic factors

  4. AAV-KLF7 Promotes Descending Propriospinal Neuron Axonal Plasticity after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wen-Yuan; Sun, Ping; Cheng, Yong-Xia

    2017-01-01

    DPSN axons mediate and maintain a variety of normal spinal functions. Unsurprisingly, DPSN tracts have been shown to mediate functional recovery following SCI. KLF7 could contribute to CST axon plasticity after spinal cord injury. In the present study, we assessed whether KLF7 could effectively promote DPSN axon regeneration and synapse formation following SCI. An AAV-KLF7 construct was used to overexpress KLF7. In vitro, KLF7 and target proteins were successfully elevated and axonal outgrowth was enhanced. In vivo, young adult C57BL/6 mice received a T10 contusion followed by an AAV-KLF7 injection at the T7–9 levels above the lesion. Five weeks later, overexpression of KLF7 was expressed in DPSN. KLF7 and KLF7 target genes (NGF, TrkA, GAP43, and P0) were detectably increased in the injured spinal cord. Myelin sparring at the lesion site, DPSN axonal regeneration and synapse formation, muscle weight, motor endplate morphology, and functional parameters were all additionally improved by KLF7 treatment. Our findings suggest that KLF7 promotes DPSN axonal plasticity and the formation of synapses with motor neurons at the caudal spinal cord, leading to improved functional recovery and further supporting the potential of AAV-KLF7 as a therapeutic agent for spinal cord injury. PMID:28884027

  5. Training-Specific Neural Plasticity in Spinal Reflexes after Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Patrick, Susan K.; Roy, Francois D.; Gorassini, Monica A.

    2016-01-01

    The neural plasticity of spinal reflexes after two contrasting forms of walking training was determined in individuals with chronic, motor-incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI). Endurance Training involved treadmill walking for as long as possible, and Precision Training involved walking precisely over obstacles and onto targets overground. Twenty participants started either Endurance or Precision Training for 2 months and then crossed over after a 2-month rest period to the other form of training for 2 months. Measures were taken before and after each phase of training and rest. The cutaneomuscular reflex (CMR) during walking was evoked in the soleus (SOL) and tibialis anterior muscles by stimulating the posterior tibial nerve at the ankle. Clonus was estimated from the EMG power in the SOL during unperturbed walking. The inhibitory component of the SOL CMR was enhanced after Endurance but not Precision Training. Clonus did not change after either form of training. Participants with lower reflex excitability tended to be better walkers (i.e., faster walking speeds) prior to training, and the reduction in clonus was significantly correlated with the improvement in walking speed and distance. Thus, reflex excitability responded in a training-specific way, with the reduction in reflex excitability related to improvements in walking function. Trial registration number is NCT01765153. PMID:27725887

  6. Training-Specific Neural Plasticity in Spinal Reflexes after Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Khan, Atif S; Patrick, Susan K; Roy, Francois D; Gorassini, Monica A; Yang, Jaynie F

    2016-01-01

    The neural plasticity of spinal reflexes after two contrasting forms of walking training was determined in individuals with chronic, motor-incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI). Endurance Training involved treadmill walking for as long as possible, and Precision Training involved walking precisely over obstacles and onto targets overground. Twenty participants started either Endurance or Precision Training for 2 months and then crossed over after a 2-month rest period to the other form of training for 2 months. Measures were taken before and after each phase of training and rest. The cutaneomuscular reflex (CMR) during walking was evoked in the soleus (SOL) and tibialis anterior muscles by stimulating the posterior tibial nerve at the ankle. Clonus was estimated from the EMG power in the SOL during unperturbed walking. The inhibitory component of the SOL CMR was enhanced after Endurance but not Precision Training. Clonus did not change after either form of training. Participants with lower reflex excitability tended to be better walkers (i.e., faster walking speeds) prior to training, and the reduction in clonus was significantly correlated with the improvement in walking speed and distance. Thus, reflex excitability responded in a training-specific way, with the reduction in reflex excitability related to improvements in walking function. Trial registration number is NCT01765153.

  7. Sparing of Descending Axons Rescues Interneuron Plasticity in the Lumbar Cord to Allow Adaptive Learning After Thoracic Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Christopher N; Faw, Timothy D; White, Susan; Buford, John A; Grau, James W; Basso, D Michele

    2016-01-01

    This study evaluated the role of spared axons on structural and behavioral neuroplasticity in the lumbar enlargement after a thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI). Previous work has demonstrated that recovery in the presence of spared axons after an incomplete lesion increases behavioral output after a subsequent complete spinal cord transection (TX). This suggests that spared axons direct adaptive changes in below-level neuronal networks of the lumbar cord. In response to spared fibers, we postulate that lumbar neuron networks support behavioral gains by preventing aberrant plasticity. As such, the present study measured histological and functional changes in the isolated lumbar cord after complete TX or incomplete contusion (SCI). To measure functional plasticity in the lumbar cord, we used an established instrumental learning paradigm (ILP). In this paradigm, neural circuits within isolated lumbar segments demonstrate learning by an increase in flexion duration that reduces exposure to a noxious leg shock. We employed this model using a proof-of-principle design to evaluate the role of sparing on lumbar learning and plasticity early (7 days) or late (42 days) after midthoracic SCI in a rodent model. Early after SCI or TX at 7 days, spinal learning was unattainable regardless of whether the animal recovered with or without axonal substrate. Failed learning occurred alongside measures of cell soma atrophy and aberrant dendritic spine expression within interneuron populations responsible for sensorimotor integration and learning. Alternatively, exposure of the lumbar cord to a small amount of spared axons for 6 weeks produced near-normal learning late after SCI. This coincided with greater cell soma volume and fewer aberrant dendritic spines on interneurons. Thus, an opportunity to influence activity-based learning in locomotor networks depends on spared axons limiting maladaptive plasticity. Together, this work identifies a time dependent interaction between spared

  8. Plasticity of Corticospinal Neural Control after Locomotor Training in Human Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Knikou, Maria

    2012-01-01

    Spinal lesions substantially impair ambulation, occur generally in young and otherwise healthy individuals, and result in devastating effects on quality of life. Restoration of locomotion after damage to the spinal cord is challenging because axons of the damaged neurons do not regenerate spontaneously. Body-weight-supported treadmill training (BWSTT) is a therapeutic approach in which a person with a spinal cord injury (SCI) steps on a motorized treadmill while some body weight is removed through an upper body harness. BWSTT improves temporal gait parameters, muscle activation patterns, and clinical outcome measures in persons with SCI. These changes are likely the result of reorganization that occurs simultaneously in supraspinal and spinal cord neural circuits. This paper will focus on the cortical control of human locomotion and motor output, spinal reflex circuits, and spinal interneuronal circuits and how corticospinal control is reorganized after locomotor training in people with SCI. Based on neurophysiological studies, it is apparent that corticospinal plasticity is involved in restoration of locomotion after training. However, the neural mechanisms underlying restoration of lost voluntary motor function are not well understood and translational neuroscience research is needed so patient-orientated rehabilitation protocols to be developed. PMID:22701805

  9. Plastic changes in lumbar segments after thoracic spinal cord injuries in adult rats: an integrative view of spinal nociceptive dysfunctions.

    PubMed

    Redondo-Castro, Elena; García-Alías, Guillermo; Navarro, Xavier

    2013-01-01

    Spinal cord injuries (SCI) cause motor, sensory and autonomic dysfunctions as well as neuropathic pain. We investigated plastic changes occurring in cord segments caudal to the lesion to assess their potential contribution to pain states after SCI. Different thoracic SCIs were performed in adult rats. Functional and algesimetry tests were performed along 3 months. Several elements of the spinal nociceptive circuitry were assessed by immunohistochemical analyses of lumbar segments. Injured animals manifested mechanical and thermal hyperalgesia. Wind-up responses and spinal reflexes were enhanced, indicating spinal hyperexcitability. We found an increase in density of nociceptive sensory afferences and in GABA inhibitory activity in dorsal horns, and increased glial reactivity. Serotoninergic descending fibers and contacts on ventral horn motoneurons were reduced. Motoneurons presented more abundant inhibitory inputs, identified by gephyrin. Not all the changes kept direct relationship to the severity of the injury. The existence of hyperalgesia despite the boost of inhibitory elements in the spinal cord confirms the dysbalance between excitatory and inhibitory mechanisms, leading to a general disinhibition. Widespread dysfunctions in remote segments after central injuries contribute to the appearance of pain, and they may be new targets for therapies aimed to modulate spinal dysfunctions after injury.

  10. Synaptic plasticity modulates the spontaneous recovery of locomotion after spinal cord hemisection.

    PubMed

    Gulino, Rosario; Dimartino, Massimo; Casabona, Antonino; Lombardo, Salvatore Andrea; Perciavalle, Vincenzo

    2007-01-01

    Several evidences have demonstrated that adult mammals could achieve a wide range of spontaneous sensory-motor recovery after spinal cord injury by means of various forms of neuroplasticity. In this study we evaluated the possibility that after low-thoracic spinal cord hemisection in the adult rat, significant hindlimb locomotor recovery could occur, and that this recovery may be driven, at least in part, by mechanisms of synaptic plasticity. In order to address these issues, we measured the expression levels of synapsin-I and brain-derived neurotrophic factor by Western blotting, at various time points after hemisection and correlated them with the motor performance on a grid walk test. Regression analysis showed that the expression of synapsin-I was strongly correlated with the spontaneous recovery of hindlimb locomotion (R=0.78). Conversely, neither the expression levels of synapsin-I nor the locomotor recovery were associated with the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor. Overall results indicate that after spinal cord hemisection, substantial recovery of hindlimb locomotion could occur spontaneously, and that synaptic plasticity within spinal circuitries below the level of the lesion, could be an important mechanism involved in these processes.

  11. Leveraging biomedical informatics for assessing plasticity and repair in primate spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Nielson, Jessica L; Haefeli, Jenny; Salegio, Ernesto A; Liu, Aiwen W; Guandique, Cristian F; Stück, Ellen D; Hawbecker, Stephanie; Moseanko, Rod; Strand, Sarah C; Zdunowski, Sharon; Brock, John H; Roy, Roland R; Rosenzweig, Ephron S; Nout-Lomas, Yvette S; Courtine, Gregoire; Havton, Leif A; Steward, Oswald; Reggie Edgerton, V; Tuszynski, Mark H; Beattie, Michael S; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C; Ferguson, Adam R

    2015-09-04

    Recent preclinical advances highlight the therapeutic potential of treatments aimed at boosting regeneration and plasticity of spinal circuitry damaged by spinal cord injury (SCI). With several promising candidates being considered for translation into clinical trials, the SCI community has called for a non-human primate model as a crucial validation step to test efficacy and validity of these therapies prior to human testing. The present paper reviews the previous and ongoing efforts of the California Spinal Cord Consortium (CSCC), a multidisciplinary team of experts from 5 University of California medical and research centers, to develop this crucial translational SCI model. We focus on the growing volumes of high resolution data collected by the CSCC, and our efforts to develop a biomedical informatics framework aimed at leveraging multidimensional data to monitor plasticity and repair targeting recovery of hand and arm function. Although the main focus of many researchers is the restoration of voluntary motor control, we also describe our ongoing efforts to add assessments of sensory function, including pain, vital signs during surgery, and recovery of bladder and bowel function. By pooling our multidimensional data resources and building a unified database infrastructure for this clinically relevant translational model of SCI, we are now in a unique position to test promising therapeutic strategies' efficacy on the entire syndrome of SCI. We review analyses highlighting the intersection between motor, sensory, autonomic and pathological contributions to the overall restoration of function. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Spinal cord injury.

  12. Spinal Cord Tumor

    MedlinePlus

    Spinal cord tumor Overview By Mayo Clinic Staff A spinal tumor is a growth that develops within your ... as vertebral tumors. Tumors that begin within the spinal cord itself are called spinal cord tumors. There are ...

  13. Undirected compensatory plasticity contributes to neuronal dysfunction after severe spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Beauparlant, Janine; van den Brand, Rubia; Barraud, Quentin; Friedli, Lucia; Musienko, Pavel; Dietz, Volker; Courtine, Grégoire

    2013-11-01

    Severe spinal cord injury in humans leads to a progressive neuronal dysfunction in the chronic stage of the injury. This dysfunction is characterized by premature exhaustion of muscle activity during assisted locomotion, which is associated with the emergence of abnormal reflex responses. Here, we hypothesize that undirected compensatory plasticity within neural systems caudal to a severe spinal cord injury contributes to the development of neuronal dysfunction in the chronic stage of the injury. We evaluated alterations in functional, electrophysiological and neuromorphological properties of lumbosacral circuitries in adult rats with a staggered thoracic hemisection injury. In the chronic stage of the injury, rats exhibited significant neuronal dysfunction, which was characterized by co-activation of antagonistic muscles, exhaustion of locomotor muscle activity, and deterioration of electrochemically-enabled gait patterns. As observed in humans, neuronal dysfunction was associated with the emergence of abnormal, long-latency reflex responses in leg muscles. Analyses of circuit, fibre and synapse density in segments caudal to the spinal cord injury revealed an extensive, lamina-specific remodelling of neuronal networks in response to the interruption of supraspinal input. These plastic changes restored a near-normal level of synaptic input within denervated spinal segments in the chronic stage of injury. Syndromic analysis uncovered significant correlations between the development of neuronal dysfunction, emergence of abnormal reflexes, and anatomical remodelling of lumbosacral circuitries. Together, these results suggest that spinal neurons deprived of supraspinal input strive to re-establish their synaptic environment. However, this undirected compensatory plasticity forms aberrant neuronal circuits, which may engage inappropriate combinations of sensorimotor networks during gait execution.

  14. Plastic Changes in Lumbar Locomotor Networks after a Partial Spinal Cord Injury in Cats.

    PubMed

    Gossard, Jean-Pierre; Delivet-Mongrain, Hugo; Martinez, Marina; Kundu, Aritra; Escalona, Manuel; Rossignol, Serge

    2015-06-24

    After an incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI), we know that plastic reorganization occurs in supraspinal structures with residual descending tracts. However, our knowledge about spinal plasticity is rather limited. Our recent studies point to changes within the spinal cord below the lesion. After a lateral left hemisection (T10), cats recovered stepping with both hindlimbs within 3 weeks. After a complete section (T13) in these cats, bilateral stepping was seen on the next day, a skill usually acquired after several weeks of treadmill training. This indicates that durable plastic changes occurred below the lesion. However, because sensory feedback entrains the stepping rhythm, it is difficult to reveal central pattern generator (CPG) adaptation. Here, we investigated whether lumbar segments of cats with a chronic hemisection were able to generate fictive locomotion-that is, without phasic sensory feedback as monitored by five muscle nerves in each hindlimb. With a chronic left hemisection, the number of muscle nerves displaying locomotor bursts was larger on the left than on the right. In addition, transmission of cutaneous reflexes was relatively facilitated on the left. Later during the acute experiment, a complete spinalization (T13) was performed and clonidine was injected to induce rhythmic activities. There were still more muscle nerves displaying locomotor bursts on the left. The results demonstrate that spinal networks were indeed modified after a hemisection with a clear asymmetry between left and right in the capacity to generate locomotion. Plastic changes in CPG and reflex transmission below the lesion are thus involved in the stepping recovery after an incomplete SCI. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/359446-10$15.00/0.

  15. A combination of keratan sulfate digestion and rehabilitation promotes anatomical plasticity after rat spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Yoshimoto; Imagama, Shiro; Ohgomori, Tomohiro; Ishiguro, Naoki; Kadomatsu, Kenji

    2015-04-23

    Functional recovery after neuronal injuries relies on neuronal network reconstruction which involves many repair processes, such as sealing of injured axon ends, axon regeneration/sprouting, and construction and refinement of synaptic connections. Chondroitin sulfate (CS) is a major inhibitor of axon regeneration/sprouting. It has been reported that the combination of task-specific rehabilitation and CS-digestion is much more effective than either treatment alone with regard to the promotion of functional and anatomical plasticity for dexterity in acute and chronic spinal cord injury models. We previously reported that keratan sulfate (KS) is another inhibitor and has a potency equal to CS. Here, we compared the effects of KS- or CS-digestion plus rehabilitation on recovery from spinal cord injury. Keratanase II or chondroitinase ABC was locally administered at the lesion after spinal cord injury at C3/4. Task-specific rehabilitation training, i.e., a single pellet reaching task using a Whishaw apparatus, was done for 3 weeks before injury, and then again at 1-6 weeks after injury. The combination of KS-digestion and rehabilitation yielded a better rate of pellet removal than either KS-digestion alone or rehabilitation alone, although these differences were not statistically significant. The combination of CS-digestion and rehabilitation showed similar results. Strikingly, both KS-digestion/rehabilitation and CS-digestion/rehabilitation showed significant increases in neurite growth in vivo as estimated by 5-hydroxytryptamine and GAP43 staining. Thus, KS-digestion and rehabilitation exerted a synergistic effect on anatomical plasticity, and this effect was comparable with that of CS-digestion/rehabilitation. KS-digestion might widen the therapeutic window of spinal cord injury if combined with rehabilitation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Dorsal–Ventral Gradient for Neuronal Plasticity in the Embryonic Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Pineda, Ricardo H.; Ribera, Angeles B.

    2008-01-01

    Within the developing Xenopus spinal cord, voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channel genes display different expression patterns, many of which occur in opposing dorsal–ventral gradients. Regional differences in Kv gene expression would predict different patterns of potassium current (IKv) regulation. However, during the first 24 h of postmitotic differentiation, all primary spinal neurons undergo a temporally coordinated upregulation of IKv density that shortens the duration of the action potential. Here, we tested whether spinal neurons demonstrate regional differences in IKv regulation subsequent to action potential maturation. We show that two types of neurons, I and II, can be identified in culture on the basis of biophysical and pharmacological properties of IKv and different firing patterns. Chronic increases in extracellular potassium, a signature of high neuronal activity, do not alter excitability properties of either neuron type. However, elevating extracellular potassium acutely after the period of action potential maturation leads to different changes in membrane properties of the two types of neurons. IKv of type I neurons gains sensitivity to the blocker XE991, whereas type II neurons increase IKv density and fire fewer action potentials. Moreover, by recording from neurons in vivo, we found that primary spinal neurons can be identified as either type I or type II. Type I neurons predominate in dorsal regions, whereas type II neurons localize to ventral regions. The findings reveal a dorsal–ventral gradient for IKv regulation and a novel form of neuronal plasticity in spinal cord neurons. PMID:18385340

  17. Spinal Cord Injury Map

    MedlinePlus

    ... Counseling About Blog Facing Disability Jeff Shannon Donate Spinal Cord Injury Map Loss of function depends on what ... control. Learn more about spinal cord injuries. A spinal cord injury affects the entire family FacingDisability is designed ...

  18. Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... Types of illnesses and disabilities Spinal cord injury Spinal cord injury Read advice from Dr. Jeffrey Rabin , a ... your health on a daily basis. Living with spinal cord injury — your questions answered top What are pediatric ...

  19. Fixed spaced stimulation restores adaptive plasticity within the spinal cord: Identifying the eliciting conditions.

    PubMed

    Baumbauer, Kyle M; Turtle, Joel D; Grau, James W

    2017-02-24

    Prior work has shown that neurons within the spinal cord are sensitive to temporal relations and that stimulus regularity impacts nociceptive processing and adaptive plasticity. Application of brief (80ms) shocks (180-900) in a variable manner induces a form of maladaptive plasticity that inhibits spinally-mediated learning and enhances nociceptive reactivity. In contrast, an extended exposure (720-900) to stimuli given at regular (fixed spaced) intervals has a restorative effect that counters nociceptive sensitization and enables learning. The present paper explores the stimulus parameters under which this therapeutic effect of fixed spaced stimulation emerges. Spinally transected rats received variably spaced stimulation (180 shocks) to the sciatic nerve at an intensity (40-V) that recruits pain (C) fibers, producing a form of maladaptive plasticity that impairs spinal learning. As previously shown, exposure to 720 fixed spaced shocks had a therapeutic effect that restored adaptive learning. This therapeutic effect was most robust at a lower shock intensity (20V) and was equally strong irrespective of pulse duration (20-80ms). A restorative effect was observed when stimuli were given at a frequency between 0.5 and 5Hz, but not at a higher (50Hz) or lower (0.05Hz) rate. The results are consistent with prior work implicating neural systems related to the central pattern generator that drives stepping behavior. Clinical implications are discussed.

  20. Fine motor skill training enhances functional plasticity of the corticospinal tract after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jian; Yang, Xiao-yu; Xia, Wei-wei; Dong, Jian; Yang, Mao-guang; Jiao, Jian-hang

    2016-01-01

    Following central nervous system injury, axonal sprouts form distal to the injury site and extend into the denervated area, reconstructing neural circuits through neural plasticity. How to facilitate this plasticity has become the key to the success of central nervous system repair. It remains controversial whether fine motor skill training contributes to the recovery of neurological function after spinal cord injury. Therefore, we established a rat model of unilateral corticospinal tract injury using a pyramidal tract cutting method. Horizontal ladder crawling and food ball grasping training procedures were conducted 2 weeks before injury and 3 days after injury. The neurological function of rat forelimbs was assessed at 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 weeks after injury. Axon growth was observed with biotinylated dextran amine anterograde tracing in the healthy corticospinal tract of the denervated area at different time periods. Our results demonstrate that compared with untrained rats, functional recovery was better in the forelimbs and forepaws of trained rats. The number of axons and the expression of growth associated protein 43 were increased at the injury site 3 weeks after corticospinal tract injury. These findings confirm that fine motor skill training promotes central nervous system plasticity in spinal cord injury rats. PMID:28197197

  1. Exercise induces cortical plasticity after neonatal spinal cord injury in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Kao, T; Shumsky, JS; Murray, M; Moxon, KA

    2009-01-01

    Exercise-induced cortical plasticity is associated with improved functional outcome after brain or nerve injury. Exercise also improves functional outcomes after spinal cord injury, but its effects on cortical plasticity are not known. The goal of this investigation was to study the effect of moderate exercise (treadmill locomotion, 3 min/day, 5days/week) on the somatotopic organization of forelimb and hindlimb somatosensory cortex (SI) after neonatal thoracic transection. We used adult rats spinalized as neonates because some of these animals develop weight-supported stepping and, therefore, the relationship between cortical plasticity and stepping could also be examined. Acute, single-neuron mapping was used to determine the percentage of cortical cells responding to cutaneous forelimb stimulation in normal, spinalized, and exercised spinalized rats. Multiple single neuron recording from arrays of chronically implanted microwires examined the magnitude of response of these cells in normal and exercised spinalized rats. Our results show that exercise not only increased the percentage of responding cells in the hindlimb SI, but also increased the magnitude of the response of these cells. This increase in response magnitude was correlated with behavioral outcome measures. In the forelimb SI, neonatal transection reduced the percentage of responding cells to forelimb stimulation but exercise reversed this loss. This restoration in the percentage of responding cells after exercise was accompanied by an increase in their response magnitude. Therefore, the increase in responsiveness of hindlimb SI to forelimb stimulation after neonatal transection and exercise may be due, in part, to the effect of exercise on the forelimb SI. PMID:19515923

  2. Induction of central nervous system plasticity by repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation to promote sensorimotor recovery in incomplete spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Ellaway, Peter H.; Vásquez, Natalia; Craggs, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Cortical and spinal cord plasticity may be induced with non-invasive transcranial magnetic stimulation to encourage long term potentiation or depression of neuronal circuits. Such plasticity inducing stimulation provides an attractive approach to promote changes in sensorimotor circuits that have been degraded by spinal cord injury (SCI). If residual corticospinal circuits can be conditioned appropriately there should be the possibility that the changes are accompanied by functional recovery. This article reviews the attempts that have been made to restore sensorimotor function and to obtain functional benefits from the application of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) of the cortex following incomplete spinal cord injury. The confounding issues that arise with the application of rTMS, specifically in SCI, are enumerated. Finally, consideration is given to the potential for rTMS to be used in the restoration of bladder and bowel sphincter function and consequent functional recovery of the guarding reflex. PMID:24904326

  3. Neuronal plasticity after a human spinal cord injury: positive and negative effects.

    PubMed

    Dietz, Volker

    2012-05-01

    In patients suffering an incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI) an improvement in walking function can be achieved by providing a functional training with an appropriate afferent input. In contrast, in immobilized incomplete and complete subjects a negative neuroplasticity leads to a neuronal dysfunction. After an SCI, neuronal centers below the level of lesion exhibit plasticity that either can be exploited by specific training paradigms or undergo a degradation of function due to the loss of appropriate input. Load- and hip-joint-related afferent inputs seem to be of crucial importance for the generation of a locomotor pattern and, consequently, the effectiveness of the locomotor training. In severely affected SCI subjects rehabilitation robots allow for a longer and more intensive training and can provide feedback information. Conversely, in severely affected chronic SCI individuals without functional training the locomotor activity in the leg muscles exhausts rapidly during assisted locomotion. This is accompanied by a shift from early to dominant late spinal reflex components. The exhaustion of locomotor activity is also observed in non-ambulatory patients with an incomplete SCI. It is assumed that in chronic SCI the patient's immobility results in a reduced input from supraspinal and peripheral sources and leads to a dominance of inhibitory drive within spinal neuronal circuitries underlying locomotor pattern and spinal reflex generation. A training with an enhancement of an appropriate proprioceptive input early after an SCI might serve as an intervention to prevent neuronal dysfunction.

  4. Exercise restores levels of neurotrophins and synaptic plasticity following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Ying, Zhe; Roy, Roland R; Edgerton, V Reggie; Gómez-Pinilla, Fernando

    2005-06-01

    We have conducted studies to determine the potential of exercise to benefit the injured spinal cord using neurotrophins. Adult rats were randomly assigned to one of three groups: (1) intact control (Con); (2) sedentary, hemisected at a mid-thoracic level (Sed-Hx), or (3) exercised, hemisected (Ex-Hx). One week after surgery, the Ex-Hx rats were exposed to voluntary running wheels for 3, 7, or 28 days. BDNF mRNA levels on the lesioned side of the spinal cord lumbar region of Sed-Hx rats were approximately 80% of Con values at all time points and BDNF protein levels were approximately 40% of Con at 28 days. Exercise compensated for the reductions in BDNF after hemisection, such that BDNF mRNA levels in the Ex-Hx rats were similar to Con after 3 days and higher than Con after 7 (17%) and 28 (27%) days of exercise. After 28 days of exercise, BDNF protein levels were 33% higher in Ex-Hx than Con rats and were highly correlated (r=0.86) to running distance. The levels of the downstream effectors for the action of BDNF on synaptic plasticity synapsin I and CREB were lower in Sed-Hx than Con rats at all time points. Synapsin I mRNA and protein levels were higher in Ex-Hx rats than Sed-Hx rats and similar to Con rats at 28 days. CREB mRNA values were higher in Ex-Hx than Sed-Hx rats at all time points. Hemisection had no significant effects on the levels of NT-3 mRNA or protein; however, voluntary exercise resulted in an increase in NT-3 mRNA levels after 28 days (145%). These results are consistent with the concept that synaptic pathways under the regulatory role of BDNF induced by exercise can play a role in facilitating recovery of locomotion following spinal cord injury.

  5. The beneficial effects of treadmill step training on activity-dependent synaptic and cellular plasticity markers after complete spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Ilha, Jocemar; Centenaro, Lígia A; Broetto Cunha, Núbia; de Souza, Daniela F; Jaeger, Mariane; do Nascimento, Patrícia S; Kolling, Janaína; Ben, Juliana; Marcuzzo, Simone; Wyse, Angela T S; Gottfried, Carmem; Achaval, Matilde

    2011-06-01

    Several studies have shown that treadmill training improves neurological outcomes and promotes plasticity in lumbar spinal cord of spinal animals. The morphological and biochemical mechanisms underlying these phenomena remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to provide evidence of activity-dependent plasticity in spinal cord segment (L5) below a complete spinal cord transection (SCT) at T8-9 in rats in which the lower spinal cord segments have been fully separated from supraspinal control and that subsequently underwent treadmill step training. Five days after SCT, spinal animals started a step-training program on a treadmill with partial body weight support and manual step help. Hindlimb movements were evaluated over time and scored on the basis of the open-field BBB scale and were significantly improved at post-injury weeks 8 and 10 in trained spinal animals. Treadmill training also showed normalization of withdrawal reflex in trained spinal animals, which was significantly different from the untrained animals at post-injury weeks 8 and 10. Additionally, compared to controls, spinal rats had alpha motoneuronal soma size atrophy and reduced synaptophysin protein expression and Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activity in lumbar spinal cord. Step-trained rats had motoneuronal soma size, synaptophysin expression and Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activity similar to control animals. These findings suggest that treadmill step training can promote activity-dependent neural plasticity in lumbar spinal cord, which may lead to neurological improvements without supraspinal descending control after complete spinal cord injury.

  6. Tethered Spinal Cord Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... Disparities Neural Interfaces Parkinson's Disease Spinal Cord Injury Stem Cells Traumatic Brain Injury Trans-Agency Activities Interagency Research ... Disparities Neural Interfaces Parkinson's Disease Spinal Cord Injury Stem Cells Traumatic Brain Injury Trans-Agency Activities Interagency Research ...

  7. Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch Therapy on Functional Recovery After SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2017-03-01

    fibers) in sections from the rostral segments of the lumbar spinal cord (L1-L3) and found that indeed CAP animals had dramatically reduced CGRP fibers... lumbar spinal cord stained for cFOS with labeled nuclei throughout the intermediate gray matter. Importantly, even the CAP animals (C-fiber depleted...stretch-sensitive free nerve endings of group III and IV fibers that mediate powerful reflex inhibition of the homonymous muscles in an animal model

  8. Spinal Cord Injuries

    MedlinePlus

    ... your body and your brain. A spinal cord injury disrupts the signals. Spinal cord injuries usually begin with a blow that fractures or ... bone disks that make up your spine. Most injuries don't cut through your spinal cord. Instead, ...

  9. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Stuck, Ellen D.; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity. PMID:26668821

  10. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Huie, J Russell; Stuck, Ellen D; Lee, Kuan H; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Beattie, Michael S; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C; Grau, James W; Ferguson, Adam R

    2015-01-01

    Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity.

  11. Activity-dependent dephosphorylation of paxillin contributed to nociceptive plasticity in spinal cord dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin-Tai; Zheng, Rui; Suo, Zhan-Wei; Liu, Yan-Ni; Zhang, Zi-Yang; Ma, Zheng-An; Xue, Ye; Xue, Man; Yang, Xian; Hu, Xiao-Dong

    2016-03-01

    The enzymatic activity of protein tyrosine kinase Src is subjected to the regulation by C-terminal Src kinase (CSK) and protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). Aberrant Src activation in the spinal cord dorsal horn is pivotal for the induction and development of nociceptive behavioral sensitization. In this study, we found that paxillin, one of the well-characterized cell adhesion components involved in cell migration and survival, integrated CSK and PTPs' signaling to regulate Src-dependent nociceptive plasticity. Paxillin localized at excitatory glutamatergic synapses in the spinal dorsal horn of mice, and the phosphorylation of Tyr118 on paxillin was necessary to associate with and target CSK at synapses. After peripheral tissue injury, the enhanced neuronal activity stimulated N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) subtype glutamate receptors, which initiated PTPs' signaling to catalyze Tyr118 dephosphorylation. The reduced Tyr118 phosphorylation disrupted paxillin interaction with CSK, leading to the dispersal of CSK out of synapses. With the loss of CSK-mediated inhibition, Src activity was persistently increased. The active Src potentiated the synaptic transmission specifically mediated by GluN2B subunit-containing NMDA receptors. The active Src also facilitated the induction of long-term potentiation of C fiber-evoked field potentials and exaggerated painful responses. In complete Freund's adjuvant-injected mice, viral expression of phosphomimicking paxillin mutant to resume CSK synaptic localization repressed Src hyperactivity. Meanwhile, this phosphomimicking paxillin mutant blunted NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and alleviated chronic inflammatory pain. These data showed that PTPs-mediated dephosphorylation of paxillin at Tyr118 was involved in the modification of nociceptive plasticity through CSK-Src signaling.

  12. GENE THERAPY APPROACHES TO ENHANCING PLASTICITY AND REGENERATION AFTER SPINAL CORD INJURY

    PubMed Central

    Franz, Steffen; Weidner, Norbert; Blesch, Armin

    2011-01-01

    During the past decades, new insights into mechanisms that limit plasticity and functional recovery after spinal cord injury have spurred the development of novel approaches to enhance axonal regeneration and rearrangement of spared circuitry. Gene therapy may provide one means to address mechanisms that underlie the insufficient regenerative response of injured neurons and can also be used to identify factors important for axonal growth. Several genetic approaches aimed to modulate the environment of injured axons, for example by localized expression of growth factors, to enhance axonal sprouting and regeneration and to guide regenerating axons towards their target have been described. In addition, genetic modification of injured neurons via intraparenchymal injection, or via retrograde transport of viral vectors has been used to manipulate the intrinsic growth capacity of injured neurons. In this review we will summarize some of the progress and limitations of cell transplantation and gene therapy to enhance axonal bridging and regeneration across a lesion site, and to maximize the function, collateral sprouting and connectivity of spared axonal systems. PMID:21281633

  13. Metaplasticity and behavior: how training and inflammation affect plastic potential within the spinal cord and recovery after injury

    PubMed Central

    Grau, James W.; Huie, J. Russell; Lee, Kuan H.; Hoy, Kevin C.; Huang, Yung-Jen; Turtle, Joel D.; Strain, Misty M.; Baumbauer, Kyle M.; Miranda, Rajesh M.; Hook, Michelle A.; Ferguson, Adam R.; Garraway, Sandra M.

    2014-01-01

    Research has shown that spinal circuits have the capacity to adapt in response to training, nociceptive stimulation and peripheral inflammation. These changes in neural function are mediated by physiological and neurochemical systems analogous to those that support plasticity within the hippocampus (e.g., long-term potentiation and the NMDA receptor). As observed in the hippocampus, engaging spinal circuits can have a lasting impact on plastic potential, enabling or inhibiting the capacity to learn. These effects are related to the concept of metaplasticity. Behavioral paradigms are described that induce metaplastic effects within the spinal cord. Uncontrollable/unpredictable stimulation, and peripheral inflammation, induce a form of maladaptive plasticity that inhibits spinal learning. Conversely, exposure to controllable or predictable stimulation engages a form of adaptive plasticity that counters these maladaptive effects and enables learning. Adaptive plasticity is tied to an up-regulation of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Maladaptive plasticity is linked to processes that involve kappa opioids, the metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptor, glia, and the cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF). Uncontrollable nociceptive stimulation also impairs recovery after a spinal contusion injury and fosters the development of pain (allodynia). These adverse effects are related to an up-regulation of TNF and a down-regulation of BDNF and its receptor (TrkB). In the absence of injury, brain systems quell the sensitization of spinal circuits through descending serotonergic fibers and the serotonin 1A (5HT 1A) receptor. This protective effect is blocked by surgical anesthesia. Disconnected from the brain, intracellular Cl- concentrations increase (due to a down-regulation of the cotransporter KCC2), which causes GABA to have an excitatory effect. It is suggested that BDNF has a restorative effect because it up-regulates KCC2 and re-establishes GABA-mediated inhibition

  14. Reversing Maladaptive Plasticity to Cure Autonomic Dysreflexia after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    binding of α2δ-1 with TSP, to block the formation of aberrant sympathetic nerve circuits and prevent occurring of AD. Current study suggested the...propriospinal interneurons that connect multiple segments of the thoracic and upper lumbar spinal cord, progresses slowly over the course of several weeks or

  15. Spinal Cord Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... Degenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal muscular atrophy Symptoms vary but might include pain, numbness, loss of sensation and muscle weakness. These symptoms can occur around the spinal cord, and also in other areas such as ...

  16. Chasing central nervous system plasticity: the brainstem's contribution to locomotor recovery in rats with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Zörner, Björn; Bachmann, Lukas C; Filli, Linard; Kapitza, Sandra; Gullo, Miriam; Bolliger, Marc; Starkey, Michelle L; Röthlisberger, Martina; Gonzenbach, Roman R; Schwab, Martin E

    2014-06-01

    Anatomical plasticity such as fibre growth and the formation of new connections in the cortex and spinal cord is one known mechanism mediating functional recovery after damage to the central nervous system. Little is known about anatomical plasticity in the brainstem, which contains key locomotor regions. We compared changes of the spinal projection pattern of the major descending systems following a cervical unilateral spinal cord hemisection in adult rats. As in humans (Brown-Séquard syndrome), this type of injury resulted in a permanent loss of fine motor control of the ipsilesional fore- and hindlimb, but for basic locomotor functions substantial recovery was observed. Antero- and retrograde tracings revealed spontaneous changes in spinal projections originating from the reticular formation, in particular from the contralesional gigantocellular reticular nucleus: more reticulospinal fibres from the intact hemicord crossed the spinal midline at cervical and lumbar levels. The intact-side rubrospinal tract showed a statistically not significant tendency towards an increased number of midline crossings after injury. In contrast, the corticospinal and the vestibulospinal tract, as well as serotonergic projections, showed little or no side-switching in this lesion paradigm. Spinal adaptations were accompanied by modifications at higher levels of control including side-switching of the input to the gigantocellular reticular nuclei from the mesencephalic locomotor region. Electrolytic microlesioning of one or both gigantocellular reticular nuclei in behaviourally recovered rats led to the reappearance of the impairments observed acutely after the initial injury showing that anatomical plasticity in defined brainstem motor networks contributes significantly to functional recovery after injury of the central nervous system. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email

  17. The Cerebellum in Maintenance of a Motor Skill: A Hierarchy of Brain and Spinal Cord Plasticity Underlies H-Reflex Conditioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolpaw, Jonathan R.; Chen, Xiang Yang

    2006-01-01

    Operant conditioning of the H-reflex, the electrical analog of the spinal stretch reflex, is a simple model of skill acquisition and involves plasticity in the spinal cord. Previous work showed that the cerebellum is essential for down-conditioning the H-reflex. This study asks whether the cerebellum is also essential for maintaining…

  18. The Cerebellum in Maintenance of a Motor Skill: A Hierarchy of Brain and Spinal Cord Plasticity Underlies H-Reflex Conditioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolpaw, Jonathan R.; Chen, Xiang Yang

    2006-01-01

    Operant conditioning of the H-reflex, the electrical analog of the spinal stretch reflex, is a simple model of skill acquisition and involves plasticity in the spinal cord. Previous work showed that the cerebellum is essential for down-conditioning the H-reflex. This study asks whether the cerebellum is also essential for maintaining…

  19. [Spinal cord ischemia].

    PubMed

    Masson, C; Leys, D; Meder, J F; Dousset, V; Pruvo, J P

    2004-01-01

    Traditional data and recent advances in the field of spinal cord ischemia are reviewed, with special attention to clinical and radiological features, as well as underlying etiology, outcome, and pathophysiology. Acute spinal cord ischemia includes arterial and venous infarction and global ischemia resulting from cardiac arrest or severe hypotension. MRI has become the technique of choice for the imaging diagnosis of spinal cord infarction. Correlation of clinical and MRI data has allowed diagnosis of clinical syndromes due to small infarcts in the central or peripheral arterial territory of the spinal cord. Diffusion-weighted MR imaging may increase the sensitivity and specificity for diagnosis of acute spinal cord infarction. Diagnosis of venous spinal cord infarction remains difficult. As for global ischemia, neuropathological studies demonstrated a great sensitivity of spinal cord to ischemia, with selective vulnerability of lumbosacral neurons. Chronic spinal cord ischemia results in a syndrome of progressive myelopathy. The cause is usually an arteriovenous malformation. Most often, diagnosis may be suspected on MRI, leading to diagnostic, and eventually therapeutic, spinal angiography.

  20. [Spontaneous spinal cord herniation].

    PubMed

    Rivas, J J; de la Lama, A; Gonza Lez, P; Ramos, A; Zurdo, M; Alday, R

    2004-10-01

    Spontaneous spinal cord herniation through a dural defect is an unusual condition. This entity has been probably underestimated before the introduction of MRI. We report a case of a 49-year-old man with a progressive Brown-Sequard syndrome. MRI and CT myelogram showed a ventrally displaced spinal cord at level T6-T7 and expansion of the posterior subarachnoid space. Through a laminectomy, a spinal cord herniation was identified and reduced. The anterior dural defect was repaired with a patch of lyophilized dura. The patient recovered muscle power but there was no improvement of the sensory disturbance. The diagnosis of spontaneous spinal cord herniation must be considered when progressive myelopathy occurs in middle-aged patients, without signs of spinal cord compression and typical radiological findings. Surgical treatment may halt the progressive deficits and even yield improvement in many cases.

  1. Reversing Maladaptive Plasticity to Cure Autonomic Dysreflexia after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-10-01

    TSP, to block the formation of aberrant sympathetic nerve circuits and prevent occurring of AD. Current study suggested that mice carry an extra α2δ-1...interneurons that connect multiple segments of the thoracic and upper lumbar spinal cord, progresses slowly over the course of several weeks or months post...spectral analysis of heart rate variability. J Auton Nerv Syst 54: 225-234. 13. Goa, KL, and Sorkin, EM (1993). Gabapentin. A review of its pharmacological

  2. Reversing Maladaptive Plasticity to Cure Autonomic Dysreflexia after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-10-01

    chronic  GBP  will  block  the  formation  of  aberrant  sympathetic   nerve  circuits  and  prevent  the  onset  of...sensory axons and propriospinal interneurons that connect multiple segments of the thoracic and upper lumbar spinal cord, progresses slowly over the

  3. Plasticity and Activation of Spared Intraspinal Respiratory Circuits Following Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    progress lend considerable initial strength to the potential therapeutic value of closed-loop ISMS activation of respiratory circuits caudal to SCI . 15...insufficiency) is one of the more devastating and potentially life- threatening consequences of spinal cord injury ( SCI ) at mid- to upper-neck (i.e., cervical...with motor complete SCIs . The most common strategy involves epidural stimulation in which an electrical current is delivered to an electrode array

  4. Resolving TRPV1 and TNF-α Mediated Spinal Cord Synaptic Plasticity and Inflammatory Pain with Neuroprotectin D1

    PubMed Central

    Park, Chul-Kyu; Lü, Ning; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Liu, Tong; Serhan, Charles N.; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2011-01-01

    Mechanisms of inflammatory pain are not fully understood. We investigated the role of TRPV1 and TNF-α, two critical mediators for inflammatory pain, in regulating spinal cord synaptic transmission. We found in mice lacking Trpv1 the frequency but not the amplitude of spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) in lamina II neurons of spinal cord slices is reduced. Further, C-fiber-induced spinal long-term potentiation (LTP) in vivo is abolished in Trpv1 knockout mice. TNF-α also increases sEPSC frequency but not amplitude in spinal lamina IIo neurons, and this increase is abolished in Trpv1 knockout mice. Single-cell PCR analysis revealed that TNF-α-responding neurons in lamina IIo are exclusively excitatory (vGluT2+) neurons. Notably, neuroprotectin-1 (NPD1), an anti-inflammatory lipid mediator derived from omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (docosahexaenoic acid) blocks TNF-α- and capsaicin-evoked sEPSC frequency increases but has no effect on basal synaptic transmission. Strikingly, NPD1 potently inhibits capsaicin-induced TRPV1 current (IC50=0.4 nM) in dissociated dorsal root ganglion neurons, and this IC50 is ≈ 500 times lower than that of AMG9810, a commonly used TRPV1 antagonist. NPD1 inhibition of TRPV1 is mediated by GPCRs, since the effects were blocked by pertussis toxin. In contrast, NPD1 had not effect on mustard oil-induced TRPA1 currents. Spinal injection of NPD1, at very low doses (0.1–10 ng), blocks spinal LTP and reduces TRPV1-dependent inflammatory pain, without affecting baseline pain. NPD1 also reduces TRPV1-independent but TNF-α-dependent pain hypersensitivity. Our findings demonstrate a novel role of NPD1 in regulating TRPV1/TNF-α-mediated spinal synaptic plasticity and identify NPD1 as a novel analgesic for treating inflammatory pain. PMID:22016541

  5. Myelinogenic Plasticity of Oligodendrocyte Precursor Cells following Spinal Cord Contusion Injury.

    PubMed

    Assinck, Peggy; Duncan, Greg J; Plemel, Jason R; Lee, Michael J; Stratton, Jo A; Manesh, Sohrab B; Liu, Jie; Ramer, Leanne M; Kang, Shin H; Bergles, Dwight E; Biernaskie, Jeff; Tetzlaff, Wolfram

    2017-09-06

    Spontaneous remyelination occurs after spinal cord injury (SCI), but the extent of myelin repair and identity of the cells responsible remain incompletely understood and contentious. We assessed the cellular origin of new myelin by fate mapping platelet-derived growth factor receptor α (PDGFRα), Olig2+, and P0+ cells following contusion SCI in mice. Oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs; PDGFRα+) produced oligodendrocytes responsible for de novo ensheathment of ∼30% of myelinated spinal axons at injury epicenter 3 months after SCI, demonstrating that these resident cells are a major contributor to oligodendrocyte regeneration. OPCs also produced the majority of myelinating Schwann cells in the injured spinal cord; invasion of peripheral myelinating (P0+) Schwann cells made only a limited contribution. These findings reveal that PDGFRα+ cells perform diverse roles in CNS repair, as multipotential progenitors that generate both classes of myelinating cells. This endogenous repair might be exploited as a therapeutic target for CNS trauma and disease.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Spinal cord injury (SCI) leads to profound functional deficits, though substantial numbers of axons often survive. One possible explanation for these deficits is loss of myelin, creating conduction block at the site of injury. SCI leads to oligodendrocyte death and demyelination, and clinical trials have tested glial transplants to promote myelin repair. However, the degree and duration of myelin loss, and the extent and mechanisms of endogenous repair, have been contentious issues. Here, we use genetic fate mapping to demonstrate that spontaneous myelin repair by endogenous oligodendrocyte precursors is much more robust than previously recognized. These findings are relevant to many types of CNS pathology, raising the possibility that CNS precursors could be manipulated to repair myelin in lieu of glial transplantation. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/378635-20$15.00/0.

  6. Modeling spinal cord biomechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luna, Carlos; Shah, Sameer; Cohen, Avis; Aranda-Espinoza, Helim

    2012-02-01

    Regeneration after spinal cord injury is a serious health issue and there is no treatment for ailing patients. To understand regeneration of the spinal cord we used a system where regeneration occurs naturally, such as the lamprey. In this work, we analyzed the stress response of the spinal cord to tensile loading and obtained the mechanical properties of the cord both in vitro and in vivo. Physiological measurements showed that the spinal cord is pre-stressed to a strain of 10%, and during sinusoidal swimming, there is a local strain of 5% concentrated evenly at the mid-body and caudal sections. We found that the mechanical properties are homogeneous along the body and independent of the meninges. The mechanical behavior of the spinal cord can be characterized by a non-linear viscoelastic model, described by a modulus of 20 KPa for strains up to 15% and a modulus of 0.5 MPa for strains above 15%, in agreement with experimental data. However, this model does not offer a full understanding of the behavior of the spinal cord fibers. Using polymer physics we developed a model that relates the stress response as a function of the number of fibers.

  7. Cortical Overexpression of Neuronal Calcium Sensor-1 Induces Functional Plasticity in Spinal Cord Following Unilateral Pyramidal Tract Injury in Rat

    PubMed Central

    Yip, Ping K.; Wong, Liang-Fong; Sears, Thomas A.; Yáñez-Muñoz, Rafael J.; McMahon, Stephen B.

    2010-01-01

    Following trauma of the adult brain or spinal cord the injured axons of central neurons fail to regenerate or if intact display only limited anatomical plasticity through sprouting. Adult cortical neurons forming the corticospinal tract (CST) normally have low levels of the neuronal calcium sensor-1 (NCS1) protein. In primary cultured adult cortical neurons, the lentivector-induced overexpression of NCS1 induces neurite sprouting associated with increased phospho-Akt levels. When the PI3K/Akt signalling pathway was pharmacologically inhibited the NCS1-induced neurite sprouting was abolished. The overexpression of NCS1 in uninjured corticospinal neurons exhibited axonal sprouting across the midline into the CST-denervated side of the spinal cord following unilateral pyramidotomy. Improved forelimb function was demonstrated behaviourally and electrophysiologically. In injured corticospinal neurons, overexpression of NCS1 induced axonal sprouting and regeneration and also neuroprotection. These findings demonstrate that increasing the levels of intracellular NCS1 in injured and uninjured central neurons enhances their intrinsic anatomical plasticity within the injured adult central nervous system. PMID:20585375

  8. Immune activation is required for NT-3-induced axonal plasticity in chronic spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Qin; Smith, George M.; Shine, H. David

    2009-01-01

    After an unilateral lesion of the corticospinal tract (CST) at the level of the medulla over-expression of Neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) in lumbar spinal cord motoneurons induced axonal sprouting of the intact CST in the acutely injured but not uninjured or chronically injured spinal cord in rats. This suggested that processes associated with immune-mediated wound healing may act with NT-3 to induce neuroplasticity. To test whether immune processes were involved we measured NT-3 induced axonal sprouting in immunosuppressed compared to immunocompetent rats. Rats were immunosuppressed with anti-leukocyte antibodies 1 day before receiving a CST lesion and then 2 weeks later NT-3 was over-expressed in the lumbar spinal motoneurons with an adenoviral vector carrying the NT-3 gene targeted to the motoneurons by retrograde transport. At 35 days post-lesion no axonal sprouting was measured in immunosuppressed rats whereas axonal sprouting was measured in the immunocompetent rats. We then tested whether re-evoking an immune response in chronically lesioned rats would induce neuroplasticity. Rats received CST lesions and then 4 months later were treated with systemic injections of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) 7 days before NT-3 was over-expressed in the lumbar spinal motoneurons. Axonal sprouting was observed in the LPS treated rats but not in control animals that were not treated with LPS. Further studies showed that lesioning the CST activated and LPS re-activated microglia and CD4+ T-cells in the acutely lesioned and chronically lesioned rats, respectively. However, immunosuppression only decreased the number of activated CD4+ T-cells suggesting they were responsible for the support of axonal growth. These observations demonstrate that processes associated with immune-mediated wound healing play a role in NT-3 induced neuroplasticity after injury. PMID:18191837

  9. Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... Circulatory control. A spinal cord injury may cause circulatory problems ranging from low blood pressure when you rise ( ... deep vein thrombosis or a pulmonary embolus. Another problem with circulatory control is a potentially life-threatening rise in ...

  10. Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... almost complete recovery. Others will result in complete paralysis × Definition A spinal cord injury usually begins with ... almost complete recovery. Others will result in complete paralysis View Full Definition Treatment Improved emergency care for ...

  11. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... is "Braingate" research? What is the status of stem-cell research? How would stem-cell therapies work in the treatment of spinal cord injuries? What does stem-cell research on animals tell us? When can we ...

  12. How the science and engineering of spaceflight contribute to understanding the plasticity of spinal cord injury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgerton, V. R.; Roy, R. R.; Hodgson, J. A.; Day, M. K.; Weiss, J.; Harkema, S. J.; Dobkin, B.; Garfinkel, A.; Konigsberg, E.; Koslovskaya, I.

    2000-01-01

    Space programs support experimental investigations related to the unique environment of space and to the technological developments from many disciplines of both science and engineering that contribute to space studies. Furthermore, interactions between scientists, engineers and administrators, that are necessary for the success of any science mission in space, promote interdiscipline communication, understanding and interests which extend well beyond a specific mission. NASA-catalyzed collaborations have benefited the spinal cord rehabilitation program at UCLA in fundamental science and in the application of expertise and technologies originally developed for the space program. Examples of these benefits include: (1) better understanding of the role of load in maintaining healthy muscle and motor function, resulting in a spinal cord injury (SCI) rehabilitation program based on muscle/limb loading; (2) investigation of a potentially novel growth factor affected by spaceflight which may help regulate muscle mass; (3) development of implantable sensors, electronics and software to monitor and analyze long-term muscle activity in unrestrained subjects; (4) development of hardware to assist therapies applied to SCI patients; and (5) development of computer models to simulate stepping which will be used to investigate the effects of neurological deficits (muscle weakness or inappropriate activation) and to evaluate therapies to correct these deficiencies.

  13. Body-Machine Interfaces after Spinal Cord Injury: Rehabilitation and Brain Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Seáñez-González, Ismael; Pierella, Camilla; Farshchiansadegh, Ali; Thorp, Elias B.; Wang, Xue; Parrish, Todd; Mussa-Ivaldi, Ferdinando A.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify rehabilitative effects and changes in white matter microstructure in people with high-level spinal cord injury following bilateral upper-extremity motor skill training. Five subjects with high-level (C5–C6) spinal cord injury (SCI) performed five visuo-spatial motor training tasks over 12 sessions (2–3 sessions per week). Subjects controlled a two-dimensional cursor with bilateral simultaneous movements of the shoulders using a non-invasive inertial measurement unit-based body-machine interface. Subjects’ upper-body ability was evaluated before the start, in the middle and a day after the completion of training. MR imaging data were acquired before the start and within two days of the completion of training. Subjects learned to use upper-body movements that survived the injury to control the body-machine interface and improved their performance with practice. Motor training increased Manual Muscle Test scores and the isometric force of subjects’ shoulders and upper arms. Moreover, motor training increased fractional anisotropy (FA) values in the cingulum of the left hemisphere by 6.02% on average, indicating localized white matter microstructure changes induced by activity-dependent modulation of axon diameter, myelin thickness or axon number. This body-machine interface may serve as a platform to develop a new generation of assistive-rehabilitative devices that promote the use of, and that re-strengthen, the motor and sensory functions that survived the injury. PMID:27999362

  14. How the science and engineering of spaceflight contribute to understanding the plasticity of spinal cord injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edgerton, V. Reggie; Roy, Roland R.; Hodgson, John A.; Day, M. Kathleen; Weiss, James; Harkema, Susan J.; Dobkin, Bruce; Garfinkel, Alan; Konigsberg, E.; Koslovskaya, Inessa

    2000-07-01

    Space programs support experimental investigations related to the unique environment of space and to the technological developments from many disciplines of both science and engineering that contribute to space studies. Furthermore, interactions between scientists, engineers and administrators, that are necessary for the success of any science mission in space, promote interdiscipline communication, understanding and interests which extend well beyond a specific mission. NASA-catalyzed collaborations have benefited the spinal cord rehabilitation program at UCLA in fundamental science and in the application of expertise and technologies originally developed for the space program. Examples of these benefits include: (1) better understanding of the role of load in maintaining healthy muscle and motor function, resulting in a spinal cord injury (SCI) rehabilitation program based on muscle/limb loading; (2) investigation of a potentially novel growth factor affected by spaceflight which may help regulate muscle mass; (3) development of implantable sensors, electronics and software to monitor and analyze long-term muscle activity in unrestrained subjects; (4) development of hardware to assist therapies applied to SCI patients; and (5) development of computer models to simulate stepping which will be used to investigate the effects of neurological deficits (muscle weakness or inappropriate activation) and to evaluate therapies to correct these deficiencies.

  15. How the science and engineering of spaceflight contribute to understanding the plasticity of spinal cord injury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgerton, V. R.; Roy, R. R.; Hodgson, J. A.; Day, M. K.; Weiss, J.; Harkema, S. J.; Dobkin, B.; Garfinkel, A.; Konigsberg, E.; Koslovskaya, I.

    2000-01-01

    Space programs support experimental investigations related to the unique environment of space and to the technological developments from many disciplines of both science and engineering that contribute to space studies. Furthermore, interactions between scientists, engineers and administrators, that are necessary for the success of any science mission in space, promote interdiscipline communication, understanding and interests which extend well beyond a specific mission. NASA-catalyzed collaborations have benefited the spinal cord rehabilitation program at UCLA in fundamental science and in the application of expertise and technologies originally developed for the space program. Examples of these benefits include: (1) better understanding of the role of load in maintaining healthy muscle and motor function, resulting in a spinal cord injury (SCI) rehabilitation program based on muscle/limb loading; (2) investigation of a potentially novel growth factor affected by spaceflight which may help regulate muscle mass; (3) development of implantable sensors, electronics and software to monitor and analyze long-term muscle activity in unrestrained subjects; (4) development of hardware to assist therapies applied to SCI patients; and (5) development of computer models to simulate stepping which will be used to investigate the effects of neurological deficits (muscle weakness or inappropriate activation) and to evaluate therapies to correct these deficiencies.

  16. Plasticity Related Gene 3 (PRG3) overcomes myelin-associated growth inhibition and promotes functional recovery after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Broggini, Thomas; Schnell, Lisa; Ghoochani, Ali; Mateos, José María; Buchfelder, Michael; Wiendieck, Kurt; Schäfer, Michael K.; Eyupoglu, Ilker Y.; Savaskan, Nicolai E.

    2016-01-01

    The Plasticity Related Gene family covers five, brain-specific, transmembrane proteins (PRG1-5, also termed LPPR1-5) that operate in neuronal plasticity during development, aging and brain trauma. Here we investigated the role of the PRG family on axonal and filopodia outgrowth. Comparative analysis revealed the strongest outgrowth induced by PRG3 (LPPR1). During development, PRG3 is ubiquitously located at the tip of neuronal processes and at the plasma membrane and declines with age. In utero electroporation of PRG3 induced dendritic protrusions and accelerated spine formations in cortical pyramidal neurons. The neurite growth promoting activity of PRG3 requires RasGRF1 (RasGEF1/Cdc25) mediated downstream signaling. Moreover, in axon collapse assays, PRG3-induced neurites resisted growth inhibitors such as myelin, Nogo-A (Reticulon/RTN-4), thrombin and LPA and impeded the RhoA-Rock-PIP5K induced neurite repulsion. Transgenic adult mice with constitutive PRG3 expression displayed strong axonal sprouting distal to a spinal cord lesion. Moreover, fostered PRG3 expression promoted complex motor-behavioral recovery compared to wild type controls as revealed in the Schnell swim test (SST). Thus, PRG3 emerges as a developmental RasGRF1-dependent conductor of filopodia formation and axonal growth enhancer. PRG3-induced neurites resist brain injury-associated outgrowth inhibitors and contribute to functional recovery after spinal cord lesions. Here, we provide evidence that PRG3 operates as an essential neuronal growth promoter in the nervous system. Maintaining PRG3 expression in aging brain may turn back the developmental clock for neuronal regeneration and plasticity. PMID:27744421

  17. Canine spinal cord glioma.

    PubMed

    Rissi, Daniel R; Barber, Renee; Burnum, Annabelle; Miller, Andrew D

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord glioma is uncommonly reported in dogs. We describe the clinicopathologic and diagnostic features of 7 cases of canine spinal cord glioma and briefly review the veterinary literature on this topic. The median age at presentation was 7.2 y. Six females and 1 male were affected and 4 dogs were brachycephalic. The clinical course lasted from 3 d to 12 wk, and clinical signs were progressive and associated with multiple suspected neuroanatomic locations in the spinal cord. Magnetic resonance imaging of 6 cases revealed T2-weighted hyperintense lesions with variable contrast enhancement in the spinal cord. All dogs had a presumptive clinical diagnosis of intraparenchymal neoplasia or myelitis based on history, advanced imaging, and cerebrospinal fluid analysis. Euthanasia was elected in all cases because of poor outcome despite anti-inflammatory or immunosuppressive treatment or because of poor prognosis at the time of diagnosis. Tumor location during autopsy ranged from C1 to L6, with no clear predilection for a specific spinal cord segment. The diagnosis was based on histopathology and the immunohistochemistry expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein, oligodendrocyte lineage transcription factor 2, 2',3'-cyclic-nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase, neuron-specific enolase, synaptophysin, and Ki-67. Diagnoses consisted of 4 cases of oligodendroglioma, 2 cases of gliomatosis cerebri, and 1 astrocytoma. This case series further defines the clinicopathologic features of canine spinal glioma and highlights the need for comprehensive immunohistochemistry in addition to routine histopathology to confirm the diagnosis of these tumors.

  18. Resolving TRPV1- and TNF-α-mediated spinal cord synaptic plasticity and inflammatory pain with neuroprotectin D1.

    PubMed

    Park, Chul-Kyu; Lü, Ning; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Liu, Tong; Serhan, Charles N; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2011-10-19

    Mechanisms of inflammatory pain are not fully understood. We investigated the role of TRPV1 (transient receptor potential subtype V1) and TNF-α, two critical mediators for inflammatory pain, in regulating spinal cord synaptic transmission. We found in mice lacking Trpv1 the frequency but not the amplitude of spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) in lamina II neurons of spinal cord slices is reduced. Further, C-fiber-induced spinal long-term potentiation (LTP) in vivo is abolished in Trpv1 knock-out mice. TNF-α also increases sEPSC frequency but not amplitude in spinal outer lamina II (lamina IIo) neurons, and this increase is abolished in Trpv1 knock-out mice. Single-cell PCR analysis revealed that TNF-α-responding neurons in lamina IIo are exclusively excitatory (vGluT2(+)) neurons. Notably, neuroprotectin-1 (NPD1), an anti-inflammatory lipid mediator derived from ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (docosahexaenoic acid), blocks TNF-α- and capsaicin-evoked sEPSC frequency increases but has no effect on basal synaptic transmission. Strikingly, NPD1 potently inhibits capsaicin-induced TRPV1 current (IC(50) = 0.4 nm) in dissociated dorsal root ganglion neurons, and this IC(50) is ≈ 500 times lower than that of AMG9810, a commonly used TRPV1 antagonist. NPD1 inhibition of TRPV1 is mediated by GPCRs, since the effects were blocked by pertussis toxin. In contrast, NPD1 had no effect on mustard oil-induced TRPA1 currents. Spinal injection of NPD1, at very low doses (0.1-10 ng), blocks spinal LTP and reduces TRPV1-dependent inflammatory pain, without affecting baseline pain. NPD1 also reduces TRPV1-independent but TNF-α-dependent pain hypersensitivity. Our findings demonstrate a novel role of NPD1 in regulating TRPV1/TNF-α-mediated spinal synaptic plasticity and identify NPD1 as a novel analgesic for treating inflammatory pain.

  19. Living with Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... to send and receive messages to and from the brain. About 200,000 people in the United States have spinal cord injuries. Most injuries occur from a traumatic event, according to the National Spinal Cord Injury ...

  20. Opioid Regulation of Spinal Cord Plasticity: Evidence the Kappa-2 Opioid Receptor Agonist GR89696 Inhibits Learning within the Rat Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Washburn, Stephanie N.; Maultsby, Marissa L.; Puga, Denise A.; Grau, James W.

    2007-01-01

    Spinal cord neurons can support a simple form of instrumental learning. In this paradigm, rats completely transected at the second thoracic vertebra learn to minimize shock exposure by maintaining a hindlimb in a flexed position. Prior exposure to uncontrollable shock (shock independent of leg position) disrupts this learning. This learning deficit lasts for at least 24 hours and depends on the NMDA receptor. Intrathecal application of an opioid antagonist blocks the expression, but not the induction, of the learning deficit. A comparison of selective opioid antagonists implicated the kappa opioid receptor. The present experiments further explore how opioids affect spinal instrumental learning using selective opioid agonists. Male Sprague Dawley rats were given an intrathecal injection (30 nmol) of a kappa-1 (U69593), a kappa-2 (GR89696), a mu (DAMGO), or a delta opioid receptor agonist (DPDPE) 10 minutes prior to instrumental testing. Only the kappa-2 opioid receptor agonist GR89696 inhibited acquisition (Experiment 1). GR89696 inhibited learning in a dose dependent fashion (Experiment 2), but had no effect on instrumental performance in previously trained subjects (Experiment 3). Pretreatment with an opioid antagonist (naltrexone) blocked the GR89696-induced learning deficit (Experiment 4). Administration of GR89696 did not produce a lasting impairment (Experiment 5) and a moderate dose of GR89696 (6 nmol) reduced the adverse consequences of uncontrollable nociceptive stimulation (Experiment 6). The results suggest that a kappa-2 opioid agonist inhibits neural modifications within the spinal cord. PMID:17983769

  1. Axonal plasticity and functional recovery after spinal cord injury in mice deficient in both glial fibrillary acidic protein and vimentin genes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menet, V.; Prieto, M.; Privat, A.; Giménez Y Ribotta, M.

    2003-07-01

    The lack of axonal regeneration in the injured adult mammalian spinal cord leads to permanent functional disabilities. The inability of neurons to regenerate their axon is appreciably due to an inhospitable environment made of an astrocytic scar. We generated mice knock-out for glial fibrillary acidic protein and vimentin, the major proteins of the astrocyte cytoskeleton, which are upregulated in reactive astrocytes. These animals, after a hemisection of the spinal cord, presented reduced astroglial reactivity associated with increased plastic sprouting of supraspinal axons, including the reconstruction of circuits leading to functional restoration. Therefore, improved anatomical and functional recovery in the absence of both proteins highlights the pivotal role of reactive astrocytes in axonal regenerative failure in adult CNS and could lead to new therapies of spinal cord lesions.

  2. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) responses elicited in hindlimb muscles as an assessment of synaptic plasticity in spino-muscular circuitry after chronic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Petrosyan, Hayk A; Alessi, Valentina; Sisto, Sue A; Kaufman, Mark; Arvanian, Victor L

    2017-03-06

    Electromagnetic stimulation applied at the cranial level, i.e. transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), is a technique for stimulation and neuromodulation used for diagnostic and therapeutic applications in clinical and research settings. Although recordings of TMS elicited motor-evoked potentials (MEP) are an essential diagnostic tool for spinal cord injured (SCI) patients, they are reliably recorded from arm, and not leg muscles. Mid-thoracic contusion is a common SCI that results in locomotor impairments predominantly in legs. In this study, we used a chronic T10 contusion SCI rat model and examined whether (i) TMS-responses in hindlimb muscles can be used for evaluation of conduction deficits in cortico-spinal circuitry and (ii) if plastic changes at spinal levels will affect these responses. In this study, plastic changes of transmission in damaged spinal cord were achieved by repetitive electro-magnetic stimulation applied over the spinal level (rSEMS). Spinal electro-magnetic stimulation was previously shown to activate spinal nerves and is gaining large acceptance as a non-invasive alternative to direct current and/or epidural electric stimulation. Results demonstrate that TMS fails to induce measurable MEPs in hindlimbs of chronically SCI animals. After facilitation of synaptic transmission in damaged spinal cord was achieved with rSEMS, however, MEPs were recorded from hindlimb muscles in response to single pulse TMS stimulation. These results provide additional evidence demonstrating beneficial effects of TMS as a diagnostic technique for descending motor pathways in uninjured CNS and after SCI. This study confirms the ability of TMS to assess plastic changes of transmission occurring at the spinal level. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  3. Extensive neurological recovery from a complete spinal cord injury: a case report and hypothesis on the role of cortical plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Choe, Ann S.; Belegu, Visar; Yoshida, Shoko; Joel, Suresh; Sadowsky, Cristina L.; Smith, Seth A.; van Zijl, Peter C. M.; Pekar, James J.; McDonald, John W.

    2013-01-01

    Neurological recovery in patients with severe spinal cord injury (SCI) is extremely rare. We have identified a patient with chronic cervical traumatic SCI, who suffered a complete loss of motor and sensory function below the injury for 6 weeks after the injury, but experienced a progressive neurological recovery that continued for 17 years. The extent of the patient's recovery from the severe trauma-induced paralysis is rare and remarkable. A detailed study of this patient using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), magnetization transfer imaging (MTI), and resting state fMRI (rs-fMRI) revealed structural and functional changes in the central nervous system that may be associated with the neurological recovery. Sixty-two percent cervical cord white matter atrophy was observed. DTI-derived quantities, more sensitive to axons, demonstrated focal changes, while MTI-derived quantity, more sensitive to myelin, showed a diffuse change. No significant cortical structural changes were observed, while rs-fMRI revealed increased brain functional connectivity between sensorimotor and visual networks. The study provides comprehensive description of the structural and functional changes in the patient using advanced MR imaging technique. This multimodal MR imaging study also shows the potential of rs-fMRI to measure the extent of cortical plasticity. PMID:23805087

  4. Vibration training after chronic spinal cord injury: Evidence for persistent segmental plasticity.

    PubMed

    Yen, Chu-Ling; McHenry, Colleen L; Petrie, Michael A; Dudley-Javoroski, Shauna; Shields, Richard K

    2017-04-24

    H-reflex paired-pulse depression is gradually lost within the first year post-SCI, a process believed to reflect reorganization of segmental interneurons after the loss of normal descending (cortical) inhibition. This reorganization co-varies in time with the development of involuntary spasms and spasticity. The purpose of this study is to determine whether long-term vibration training may initiate the return of H-reflex paired-pulse depression in individuals with chronic, complete SCI. Five men with SCI received twice-weekly vibration training (30Hz, 0.6g) to one lower limb while seated in a wheelchair. The contra-lateral limb served as a within-subject control. Paired-pulse H-reflexes were obtained before, during, and after a session of vibration. Untrained limb H-reflex depression values were comparable to chronic SCI values from previous reports. In contrast, the trained limbs of all 5 participants showed depression values that were within the range of previously-reported Acute SCI and Non-SCI H-reflex depression. The average difference between limbs was 34.98% (p=0.016). This evidence for the return of H-reflex depression suggests that even for people with long-standing SCI, plasticity persists in segmental reflex pathways. The spinal networks involved with the clinical manifestation of spasticity may thus retain adaptive plasticity after long-term SCI. The results of this study indicate that vibration training may hold promise as an anti-spasticity rehabilitation intervention. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Traumatic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Ahuja, Christopher S; Wilson, Jefferson R; Nori, Satoshi; Kotter, Mark R N; Druschel, Claudia; Curt, Armin; Fehlings, Michael G

    2017-04-27

    Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) has devastating consequences for the physical, social and vocational well-being of patients. The demographic of SCIs is shifting such that an increasing proportion of older individuals are being affected. Pathophysiologically, the initial mechanical trauma (the primary injury) permeabilizes neurons and glia and initiates a secondary injury cascade that leads to progressive cell death and spinal cord damage over the subsequent weeks. Over time, the lesion remodels and is composed of cystic cavitations and a glial scar, both of which potently inhibit regeneration. Several animal models and complementary behavioural tests of SCI have been developed to mimic this pathological process and form the basis for the development of preclinical and translational neuroprotective and neuroregenerative strategies. Diagnosis requires a thorough patient history, standardized neurological physical examination and radiographic imaging of the spinal cord. Following diagnosis, several interventions need to be rapidly applied, including haemodynamic monitoring in the intensive care unit, early surgical decompression, blood pressure augmentation and, potentially, the administration of methylprednisolone. Managing the complications of SCI, such as bowel and bladder dysfunction, the formation of pressure sores and infections, is key to address all facets of the patient's injury experience.

  6. Adaptive muscle plasticity of a remaining agonist following denervation of its close synergists in a model of complete spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Dambreville, Charline; Charest, Jérémie; Thibaudier, Yann; Hurteau, Marie-France; Kuczynski, Victoria; Grenier, Guillaume; Frigon, Alain

    2016-09-01

    Complete spinal cord injury (SCI) alters the contractile properties of skeletal muscle, and although exercise can induce positive changes, it is unclear whether the remaining motor system can produce adaptive muscle plasticity in response to a subsequent peripheral nerve injury. To address this, the nerve supplying the lateral gastrocnemius (LG) and soleus muscles was sectioned unilaterally in four cats that had recovered hindlimb locomotion after spinal transection. In these spinal cats, kinematics and electromyography (EMG) were collected before and for 8 wk after denervation. Muscle histology was performed on LG and medial gastrocnemius (MG) bilaterally in four spinal and four intact cats. In spinal cats, cycle duration for the hindlimb ipsilateral or contralateral to the denervation could be significantly increased or decreased compared with predenervation values. Stance duration was generally increased and decreased for the contralateral and ipsilateral hindlimbs, respectively. The EMG amplitude of MG was significantly increased bilaterally after denervation and remained elevated 8 wk after denervation. In spinal cats the ipsilateral LG was significantly smaller than the contralateral LG, whereas the ipsilateral MG weighed significantly more than the contralateral MG. Histological characterizations revealed significantly larger fiber areas for type IIa fibers of the ipsilateral MG in three of four spinal cats. Microvascular density in the ipsilateral MG was significantly higher than in the contralateral MG. In intact cats, no differences were found for muscle weight, fiber area, or microvascular density between homologous muscles. Therefore, the remaining motor system after complete SCI retains the ability to produce adaptive muscle plasticity.

  7. Plasticity of Urinary Bladder Reflexes Evoked by Stimulation of Pudendal Afferent Nerves after Chronic Spinal Cord Injury in Cats

    PubMed Central

    Tai, Changfeng; Chen, Mang; Shen, Bing; Wang, Jicheng; Liu, Hailong; Roppolo, James R.; de Groat, William C.

    2011-01-01

    Bladder reflexes evoked by stimulation of pudendal afferent nerves (PudA-to-Bladder reflex) were studied in normal and chronic spinal cord injured (SCI) adult cats to examine the reflex plasticity. Physiological activation of pudendal afferent nerves by tactile stimulation of the perigenital skin elicits an inhibitory PudA-to-Bladder reflex in normal cats, but activates an excitatory reflex in chronic SCI cats. However, in both normal and chronic SCI cats electrical stimulation applied to the perigenital skin or directly to the pudendal nerve induces either inhibitory or excitatory PudA-to-Bladder reflexes depending on stimulation frequency. An inhibitory response occurs at 3–10 Hz stimulation, but becomes excitatory at 20–30 Hz. The inhibitory reflex activated by electrical stimulation significantly (P<0.05) increases the bladder capacity to about 180% of control capacity in normal and chronic SCI cats. The excitatory reflex significantly (P<0.05) reduces bladder capacity to about 40% of control capacity in chronic SCI cats, but does not change bladder capacity in normal cats. Electrical stimulation of pudendal afferent nerves during slow bladder filling elicits a large amplitude bladder contraction comparable to the contraction induced by distension alone. A bladder volume about 60% of bladder capacity was required to elicit this excitatory reflex in normal cats; however, in chronic SCI cats a volume less than 20% of bladder capacity was sufficient to unmask an excitatory response. This study revealed the co-existence of both inhibitory and excitatory PudA-to-Bladder reflex pathways in cats before and after chronic SCI. However our data combined with published electrophysiological data strongly indicates that the spinal circuitry for both the excitatory and inhibitory PudA-to-Bladder reflexes undergoes a marked reorganization after SCI. PMID:21192927

  8. Plasticity of urinary bladder reflexes evoked by stimulation of pudendal afferent nerves after chronic spinal cord injury in cats.

    PubMed

    Tai, Changfeng; Chen, Mang; Shen, Bing; Wang, Jicheng; Liu, Hailong; Roppolo, James R; de Groat, William C

    2011-03-01

    Bladder reflexes evoked by stimulation of pudendal afferent nerves (PudA-to-Bladder reflex) were studied in normal and chronic spinal cord injured (SCI) adult cats to examine the reflex plasticity. Physiological activation of pudendal afferent nerves by tactile stimulation of the perigenital skin elicits an inhibitory PudA-to-Bladder reflex in normal cats, but activates an excitatory reflex in chronic SCI cats. However, in both normal and chronic SCI cats electrical stimulation applied to the perigenital skin or directly to the pudendal nerve induces either inhibitory or excitatory PudA-to-Bladder reflexes depending on stimulation frequency. An inhibitory response occurs at 3-10 Hz stimulation, but becomes excitatory at 20-30 Hz. The inhibitory reflex activated by electrical stimulation significantly (P<0.05) increases the bladder capacity to about 180% of control capacity in normal and chronic SCI cats. The excitatory reflex significantly (P<0.05) reduces bladder capacity to about 40% of control capacity in chronic SCI cats, but does not change bladder capacity in normal cats. Electrical stimulation of pudendal afferent nerves during slow bladder filling elicits a large amplitude bladder contraction comparable to the contraction induced by distension alone. A bladder volume about 60% of bladder capacity was required to elicit this excitatory reflex in normal cats; however, in chronic SCI cats a volume less than 20% of bladder capacity was sufficient to unmask an excitatory response. This study revealed the co-existence of both inhibitory and excitatory PudA-to-Bladder reflex pathways in cats before and after chronic SCI. However our data combined with published electrophysiological data strongly indicates that the spinal circuitry for both the excitatory and inhibitory PudA-to-Bladder reflexes undergoes a marked reorganization after SCI.

  9. Delayed Exercise Is Ineffective at Reversing Aberrant Nociceptive Afferent Plasticity or Neuropathic Pain After Spinal Cord Injury in Rats.

    PubMed

    Detloff, Megan Ryan; Quiros-Molina, Daniel; Javia, Amy S; Daggubati, Lekhaj; Nehlsen, Anthony D; Naqvi, Ali; Ninan, Vinu; Vannix, Kirsten N; McMullen, Mary-Katharine; Amin, Sheena; Ganzer, Patrick D; Houlé, John D

    2016-08-01

    Neuropathic pain is a debilitating consequence of spinal cord injury (SCI) that correlates with sensory fiber sprouting. Recent data indicate that exercise initiated early after SCI prevents the development of allodynia and modulated nociceptive afferent plasticity. This study determined if delaying exercise intervention until pain is detected would similarly ameliorate established SCI-induced pain. Adult, female Sprague-Dawley rats with a C5 unilateral contusion were separated into SCI allodynic and SCI non-allodynic cohorts at 14 or 28 days postinjury when half of each group began exercising on automated running wheels. Allodynia, assessed by von Frey testing, was not ameliorated by exercise. Furthermore, rats that began exercise with no allodynia developed paw hypersensitivity within 2 weeks. At the initiation of exercise, the SCI Allodynia group displayed marked overlap of peptidergic and non-peptidergic nociceptive afferents in the C7 and L5 dorsal horn, while the SCI No Allodynia group had scant overlap. At the end of 5 weeks of exercise both the SCI Allodynia and SCI No Allodynia groups had extensive overlap of the 2 c-fiber types. Our findings show that exercise therapy initiated at early stages of allodynia is ineffective at attenuating neuropathic pain, but rather that it induces allodynia-aberrant afferent plasticity in previously pain-free rats. These data, combined with our previous results, suggest that there is a critical therapeutic window when exercise therapy may be effective at treating SCI-induced allodynia and that there are postinjury periods when exercise can be deleterious. © The Author(s) 2015.

  10. Involvement of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and sonic hedgehog in the spinal cord plasticity after neurotoxic partial removal of lumbar motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Gulino, Rosario; Gulisano, Massimo

    2012-07-01

    Adult mammals could spontaneously achieve a partial sensory-motor recovery after spinal cord injury, by mechanisms including synaptic plasticity. We previously showed that this recovery is associated to the expression of synapsin-I, and that sonic hedgehog and Notch-1 could be also involved in plasticity. The role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and glutamate receptors in regulating synaptic efficacy has been explored in the last decade but, although these mechanisms are now well-defined in the brain, the molecular mechanisms underlying the so called "spinal learning" are still less clear. Here, we measured the expression levels of choline acetyltransferase, synapsin-I, sonic hedgehog, Notch-1, glutamate receptor subunits (GluR1, GluR2, GluR4, NMDAR1) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor, in a motoneuron-depleted mouse spinal lesion model obtained by intramuscular injection of cholera toxin-B saporin. The lesion caused the down-regulation of the majority of analysed proteins. Moreover, we found that in lesioned but not in control spinal tissue, synapsin-I expression is associated to that of both brain-derived neurotrophic factor and sonic hedgehog, whereas GluR2 expression is linked to that of Shh. These results suggest that brain-derived neurotrophic factor and sonic hedgehog could collaborate in modulating synaptic plasticity after the removal of motoneurons, by a mechanism involving both pre- and post-synaptic processes. Interestingly, the involvement of sonic hedgehog showed here is novel, and offers new routes to address spinal cord plasticity and repair.

  11. The dura causes spinal cord compression after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Saadoun, Samira; Werndle, Melissa C; Lopez de Heredia, Luis; Papadopoulos, Marios C

    2016-10-01

    MR scans from 65 patients with traumatic spinal cord injury were analysed; on admission 95% had evidence of cord compression - in 26% due to the dura, and in the remaining 74% due to extradural factors. Compression due to dural factors resolved with a half-life of 5.5 days. These findings suggest that bony decompression alone may not relieve spinal cord compression in the quarter of patients in whom dural factors are significant.

  12. Examination of the Combined Effects of Chondroitinase ABC, Growth Factors and Locomotor Training following Compressive Spinal Cord Injury on Neuroanatomical Plasticity and Kinematics

    PubMed Central

    Alluin, Olivier; Fehlings, Michael G.; Rossignol, Serge; Karimi-Abdolrezaee, Soheila

    2014-01-01

    While several cellular and pharmacological treatments have been evaluated following spinal cord injury (SCI) in animal models, it is increasingly recognized that approaches to address the glial scar, including the use of chondroitinase ABC (ChABC), can facilitate neuroanatomical plasticity. Moreover, increasing evidence suggests that combinatorial strategies are key to unlocking the plasticity that is enabled by ChABC. Given this, we evaluated the anatomical and functional consequences of ChABC in a combinatorial approach that also included growth factor (EGF, FGF2 and PDGF-AA) treatments and daily treadmill training on the recovery of hindlimb locomotion in rats with mid thoracic clip compression SCI. Using quantitative neuroanatomical and kinematic assessments, we demonstrate that the combined therapy significantly enhanced the neuroanatomical plasticity of major descending spinal tracts such as corticospinal and serotonergic-spinal pathways. Additionally, the pharmacological treatment attenuated chronic astrogliosis and inflammation at and adjacent to the lesion with the modest synergistic effects of treadmill training. We also observed a trend for earlier recovery of locomotion accompanied by an improvement of the overall angular excursions in rats treated with ChABC and growth factors in the first 4 weeks after SCI. At the end of the 7-week recovery period, rats from all groups exhibited an impressive spontaneous recovery of the kinematic parameters during locomotion on treadmill. However, although the combinatorial treatment led to clear chronic neuroanatomical plasticity, these structural changes did not translate to an additional long-term improvement of locomotor parameters studied including hindlimb-forelimb coupling. These findings demonstrate the beneficial effects of combined ChABC, growth factors and locomotor training on the plasticity of the injured spinal cord and the potential to induce earlier neurobehavioral recovery. However, additional

  13. Plasticity and Activation of Spared Intraspinal Respiratory Circuits Following Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-10-01

    including the time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and... reviewing this collection of information. Send comments regarding this burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including...initial review , we also examined the efficacy of high frequency spinal stimulation. Our data indicate this approach is not effective at selectively

  14. Differences in the regenerative response of neuronal cell populations and indications for plasticity in intraspinal neurons after spinal cord transection in adult zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Becker, Thomas; Lieberoth, Bettina C; Becker, Catherina G; Schachner, Melitta

    2005-10-01

    In zebrafish, the capacity to regenerate long axons varies among different populations of axotomized neurons after spinal cord transection. In specific brain nuclei, 84-92% of axotomized neurons upregulate expression of the growth-related genes GAP-43 and L1.1 and 32-51% of these neurons regrow their descending axons. In contrast, 16-31% of spinal neurons with axons ascending to the brainstem upregulate these genes and only 2-4% regrow their axons. Dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons were not observed to regrow their ascending axons or to increase expression of GAP-43 mRNA. Expression of L1.1 mRNA is high in unlesioned and axotomized DRG neurons. In the lesioned spinal cord, expression of growth-related molecules is increased in a substantial population of non-axotomized neurons, suggesting morphological plasticity in the spinal-intrinsic circuitry. We propose that locomotor recovery in spinal-transected adult zebrafish is influenced less by recovery of ascending pathways, but more by regrowth of descending tracts and rearrangement of intraspinal circuitry.

  15. Retraining the injured spinal cord

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgerton, V. R.; Leon, R. D.; Harkema, S. J.; Hodgson, J. A.; London, N.; Reinkensmeyer, D. J.; Roy, R. R.; Talmadge, R. J.; Tillakaratne, N. J.; Timoszyk, W.; hide

    2001-01-01

    The present review presents a series of concepts that may be useful in developing rehabilitative strategies to enhance recovery of posture and locomotion following spinal cord injury. First, the loss of supraspinal input results in a marked change in the functional efficacy of the remaining synapses and neurons of intraspinal and peripheral afferent (dorsal root ganglion) origin. Second, following a complete transection the lumbrosacral spinal cord can recover greater levels of motor performance if it has been exposed to the afferent and intraspinal activation patterns that are associated with standing and stepping. Third, the spinal cord can more readily reacquire the ability to stand and step following spinal cord transection with repetitive exposure to standing and stepping. Fourth, robotic assistive devices can be used to guide the kinematics of the limbs and thus expose the spinal cord to the new normal activity patterns associated with a particular motor task following spinal cord injury. In addition, such robotic assistive devices can provide immediate quantification of the limb kinematics. Fifth, the behavioural and physiological effects of spinal cord transection are reflected in adaptations in most, if not all, neurotransmitter systems in the lumbosacral spinal cord. Evidence is presented that both the GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory systems are up-regulated following complete spinal cord transection and that step training results in some aspects of these transmitter systems being down-regulated towards control levels. These concepts and observations demonstrate that (a) the spinal cord can interpret complex afferent information and generate the appropriate motor task; and (b) motor ability can be defined to a large degree by training.

  16. Retraining the injured spinal cord

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgerton, V. R.; Leon, R. D.; Harkema, S. J.; Hodgson, J. A.; London, N.; Reinkensmeyer, D. J.; Roy, R. R.; Talmadge, R. J.; Tillakaratne, N. J.; Timoszyk, W.; Tobin, A.

    2001-01-01

    The present review presents a series of concepts that may be useful in developing rehabilitative strategies to enhance recovery of posture and locomotion following spinal cord injury. First, the loss of supraspinal input results in a marked change in the functional efficacy of the remaining synapses and neurons of intraspinal and peripheral afferent (dorsal root ganglion) origin. Second, following a complete transection the lumbrosacral spinal cord can recover greater levels of motor performance if it has been exposed to the afferent and intraspinal activation patterns that are associated with standing and stepping. Third, the spinal cord can more readily reacquire the ability to stand and step following spinal cord transection with repetitive exposure to standing and stepping. Fourth, robotic assistive devices can be used to guide the kinematics of the limbs and thus expose the spinal cord to the new normal activity patterns associated with a particular motor task following spinal cord injury. In addition, such robotic assistive devices can provide immediate quantification of the limb kinematics. Fifth, the behavioural and physiological effects of spinal cord transection are reflected in adaptations in most, if not all, neurotransmitter systems in the lumbosacral spinal cord. Evidence is presented that both the GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory systems are up-regulated following complete spinal cord transection and that step training results in some aspects of these transmitter systems being down-regulated towards control levels. These concepts and observations demonstrate that (a) the spinal cord can interpret complex afferent information and generate the appropriate motor task; and (b) motor ability can be defined to a large degree by training.

  17. Congenital absence of corticospinal tract does not severely affect plastic changes of the developing postnatal spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Huang, L; Xian, Q; Shen, N; Shi, L; Qu, Y; Zhou, L

    2015-08-20

    The arrival and refinement of corticospinal afferents are likely to influence the maturation of the spinal cord and sensory-motor networks. To understand this better, we studied the revision of monosynaptic muscle afferents, the expression of activity-related genes, neurotrophins and their receptors in the cervical spinal cord from postnatal day (P) 0 to 21. We compared control and Celsr3|Emx1 mice, in which corticospinal axons never develop. The corticospinal tract (CST), labeled by anti-protein kinase C gamma (PKCγ) antibody in the dorsal funiculus, increased gradually in the control, but was never visible in the mutant. Using anti-parvalbumin and choline acetyltransferase double immunostaining, close contacts between proprioceptive afferent fibers and spinal motor neurons appeared at P0 and were gradually eliminated thereafter, with no difference between control and mutant mice. In both genotypes, the number of parvalbumin-positive interneurons increased similarly from P7 to P21, and a comparable upregulation of c-Jun protein was seen at P7. Contrary to control samples, in which ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) protein levels increased from P0 to P7 and gradually decreased after P14, CNTF concentrations were time-invariant in mutant samples. The dynamic profile of neurotrophin-3 (NT3) expression was also moderately affected in mutant mice. In control spinal cord, NT3 was increased at P7 and decreased at P14, but remained more stable in mutant samples. In contrast, expression profiles of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), tropomyosin-related kinase (Trk) B, TrkC, p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)) and glial cell-line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) were similar in both genotypes. In conclusion, with the possible exception of CNTF and NT3 expression, most events that accompany maturation of the spinal cord appear largely independent of corticospinal inputs.

  18. Treadmill training induced lumbar motoneuron dendritic plasticity and behavior recovery in adult rats after a thoracic contusive spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hongxing; Liu, Nai-Kui; Zhang, Yi Ping; Deng, Lingxiao; Lu, Qing-Bo; Shields, Christopher B; Walker, Melissa J; Li, Jianan; Xu, Xiao-Ming

    2015-09-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is devastating, causing sensorimotor impairments and paralysis. Persisting functional limitations on physical activity negatively affect overall health in individuals with SCI. Physical training may improve motor function by affecting cellular and molecular responses of motor pathways in the central nervous system (CNS) after SCI. Although motoneurons form the final common path for motor output from the CNS, little is known concerning the effect of exercise training on spared motoneurons below the level of injury. Here we examined the effect of treadmill training on morphological, trophic, and synaptic changes in the lumbar motoneuron pool and on behavior recovery after a moderate contusive SCI inflicted at the 9th thoracic vertebral level (T9) using an Infinite Horizon (IH, 200 kDyne) impactor. We found that treadmill training significantly improved locomotor function, assessed by Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor rating scale, and reduced foot drops, assessed by grid walking performance, as compared with non-training. Additionally, treadmill training significantly increased the total neurite length per lumbar motoneuron innervating the soleus and tibialis anterior muscles of the hindlimbs as compared to non-training. Moreover, treadmill training significantly increased the expression of a neurotrophin brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the lumbar motoneurons as compared to non-training. Finally, treadmill training significantly increased synaptic density, identified by synaptophysin immunoreactivity, in the lumbar motoneuron pool as compared to non-training. However, the density of serotonergic terminals in the same regions did not show a significant difference between treadmill training and non-training. Thus, our study provides a biological basis for exercise training as an effective medical practice to improve recovery after SCI. Such an effect may be mediated by synaptic plasticity, and neurotrophic modification in the

  19. Attitudes Towards Individuals with Spinal Cord Injuries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conway, Cassandra Sligh D.; Gooden, Randy; Nowell, Jennifer; Wilson, Navodda

    2010-01-01

    This paper will shed light on the lives of persons with spinal cord injuries by revealing the literature on spinal cord injuries that focuses on research that can shed light on attitudes towards persons with spinal cord injuries. The background literature related to incidences, the definition of spinal cord injury, and vocational opportunities are…

  20. Trigemino-cervical-spinal reflexes after traumatic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Orioli, Andrea; Brigo, Francesco; Christova, Monica; Tezzon, Frediano; Golaszewski, Stefan; Trinka, Eugen

    2015-05-01

    After spinal cord injury (SCI) reorganization of spinal cord circuits occur both above and below the spinal lesion. These functional changes can be determined by assessing electrophysiological recording. We aimed at investigating the trigemino-cervical reflex (TCR) and trigemino-spinal reflex (TSR) responses after traumatic SCI. TCR and TSR were registered after stimulation of the infraorbital nerve from the sternocleidomastoid, splenius, deltoid, biceps and first dorsal interosseous muscles in 10 healthy subjects and 10 subjects with incomplete cervical SCI. In the control subjects reflex responses were registered from the sternocleidomastoid, and splenium muscles, while no responses were obtained from upper limb muscles. In contrast, smaller but clear short latency EMG potentials were recorded from deltoid and biceps muscles in about half of the SCI patients. Moreover, the amplitudes of the EMG responses in the neck muscles were significantly higher in patients than in control subjects. The reflex responses are likely to propagate up the brainstem and down the spinal cord along the reticulospinal tracts and the propriospinal system. Despite the loss of corticospinal axons, synaptic plasticity in pre-existing pathways and/or formation of new circuits through sprouting processes above the injury site may contribute to the findings of this preliminary study and may be involved in the functional recovery. Trigemino-cervical-spinal reflexes can be used to demonstrate and quantify plastic changes at brainstem and cervical level following SCI. Copyright © 2014 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Cortical and subcortical plasticity in the brains of humans, primates, and rats after damage to sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Kaas, Jon H.; Qi, Hui-Xin; Burish, Mark; Gharbawie, Omar; Onifer, Stephen M.; Massey, James M.

    2008-01-01

    The failure of injured axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury deprives brain neurons of their normal sources of activation. These injuries also result in the reorganization of affected areas of the central nervous system that is thought to drive both the ensuing recovery of function and the formation of maladaptive neuronal circuitry. Better understanding of the physiological consequences of novel synaptic connections produced by injury and the mechanisms that control their formation are important to the development of new successful strategies for the treatment of patients with spinal cord injuries. Here we discuss the anatomical, physiological and behavioral changes that take place in response to injury-induced plasticity after damage to the dorsal column pathway in rats and monkeys. Complete section of the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level in monkeys and rats interrupts the ascending axon branches of low threshold mechanoreceptor afferents subserving the forelimb and the rest of the lower body. Such lesions render the corresponding part of the somatotopic representation of primary somatosensory cortex totally unresponsive to tactile stimuli. There are also behavioral consequences of the sensory loss, including an impaired use of the hand/forelimb in manipulating small objects. In monkeys, if some of the afferents from the hand remain intact after dorsal column lesions, these remaining afferents extensively reactivate portions of somatosensory cortex formerly representing the hand. This functional reorganization develops over a postoperative period of one month, during which hand use rapidly improves. These recoveries appear to be mediated, at least in part, by the sprouting of preserved afferents within the cuneate nucleus of the dorsal column-trigeminal complex. In rats, such functional collateral sprouting has been promoted by the post-lesion digestion of the perineuronal net in the cuneate nucleus. Thus, this and other

  2. Unsuspected plasticity of single neurons after connection of the corticospinal tract with peripheral nerves in spinal cord lesions.

    PubMed

    Brunelli, Giorgio; Wild, Klaus von

    2008-05-01

    We sought to understand an unsuspected plasticity of single neurons found after connection of the cord with peripheral nerves in paraplegics. Our research aimed at making paraplegics walk again, after 20 years of experimental surgery in animals that, among other things, demonstrated the alteration of the motor end plate receptors from cholinergic to glutamatergic; the same connection was done in humans. The grafts were put in the corticospinal tract of the cord randomly, without possibility of choosing the axons coming from different areas of the brain cortex. As a result, the patient was able to selectively activate the muscles she wanted without cocontractions of the other muscles connected with the same cortical areas. We believe that unlike in nerve or tendon transfers, where the whole cortical area corresponding to the transfer changes its function (a phenomenon that we call "brain plasticity by areas"), in the connection of the lateral bundle of the thoracic cord (the CST) with different peripheral nerves and muscles, the brain plasticity occurs by single neurons; in fact, there are no cocontractions. We propose to call it "brain plasticity by single neurons." We speculate that this phenomenon is due to the simultaneous activation of neurons spread in different cortical areas for a given specific movement while the other neurons of the same areas connected with peripheral nerves of different muscles are not activated. Why different neurons of the same area fire at different times according to different voluntary demands remains to be discovered, and we are committed to solve this enigma.

  3. Intramedullary Cervical Spinal Cord Abscess.

    PubMed

    Bakhsheshian, Joshua; Kim, Paul E; Attenello, Frank J

    2017-10-01

    Intramedullary spinal cord abscesses are rarely encountered in modern neurosurgical practice. Select patients are at high risk for developing an intramedullary spinal cord abscess, which can result in acute neurologic deficits. Patients with failed conservative management may benefit from early surgical intervention; however, the evidence is limited by level 3 studies. In this case presentation, the patient failed conservative management for a cervical intramedullary spinal cord abscess and developed acute neurologic deficits. The decision was made to perform an urgent cervical laminectomy and drainage to avoid any further decline that may have occurred with continued conservative management. Increased awareness of intramedullary spinal cord abscess is warranted for its clinical suspicion and emergent treatment in select circumstances. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-04-01

    in order to minimize scarring and injected dissociated adult DRGs rostral to a dorsal column transection of the spinal cord. From the sensory... columns were dissected and post-fixed overnight in 4% paraformaldehyde, and then spinal cords were dissected from spinal columns and cryoprotected...AD______________ Award Number: W81XWH-10-1-0941 TITLE: Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue

  5. [Surgical anatomy of spinal cord tumors].

    PubMed

    Peltier, J; Chenin, L; Hannequin, P; Page, C; Havet, É; Foulon, P; Le Gars, D

    2015-08-03

    In this article, we respectively describe the morphology of the spinal cord, spinal meningeal layers, main fiber tracts, and both arterial and venous distribution in order to explain signs of spinal cord compression. We will then describe a surgical technique for spinal cord tumor removal.

  6. Immediate plasticity in the motor pathways after spinal cord hemisection: implications for transcranial magnetic motor-evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Fujiki, Minoru; Kobayashi, Hidenori; Inoue, Ryo; Ishii, Keisuke

    2004-06-01

    The present study evaluates motor functional recovery after C2 spinal cord hemisection with or without contralateral brachial root transection, which causes a condition that is similar to the crossed phrenic phenomenon on rats. Descending motor pathways, including the reticulospinal extrapyramidal tract and corticospinal pyramidal tracts, were evaluated by transcranial magnetic motor-evoked potentials (mMEPs) and direct cortical electrical motor-evoked potentials (eMEP), respectively. All MEPs recorded from the left forelimb were abolished immediately after the left C2 hemisection. Left mMEPs recovered dramatically immediately after contralateral right brachial root transection. Corticospinal eMEPs never recovered, regardless of transection. The facilitation of mMEPs in animals that had undergone combined contralateral root transection was well correlated with open-field behavioral motor performance. Both electrophysiological and neurological facilitations were significantly attenuated by the selective serotonin synthesis inhibitor para-chlorophenylalanine (p-CPA). These results suggest that serotonergic reticulospinal fibers located contralateral to hemisection contribute to the behavioral and electrophysiological improvement that immediately follows spinal cord injury (SCI).

  7. Hypothermia for spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Brian K; Mann, Cody; Sohn, Hong Moon; Hilibrand, Alan S; Phillips, Frank M; Wang, Jeffrey C; Fehlings, Michael G

    2008-01-01

    Interest in systemic and local hypothermia extends back over many decades, and both have been investigated as potential neuroprotective interventions in a number of clinical settings, including traumatic brain injury, stroke, cardiac arrest, and both intracranial and thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm surgery. The recent use of systemic hypothermia in an injured National Football League football player has focused a great deal of attention on the potential use of hypothermia in acute spinal cord injury. To provide spinal clinicians with an overview of the biological rationale for using hypothermia, the past studies and current clinical applications of hypothermia, and the basic science studies and clinical reports of the use of hypothermia in acute traumatic spinal cord injury. A review of the English literature on hypothermia was performed, starting with the original clinical description of the use of systemic hypothermia in 1940. Pertinent basic science and clinical articles were identified using PubMed and the bibliographies of the articles. Each article was reviewed to provide a concise description of hypothermia's biological rationale, current clinical applications, complications, and experience as a neuroprotective intervention in spinal cord injury. Hypothermia has a multitude of physiologic effects. From a neuroprotective standpoint, hypothermia slows basic enzymatic activity, reduces the cell's energy requirements, and thus maintains Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) concentrations. As such, systemic hypothermia has been shown to be neuroprotective in patients after cardiac arrest, although its benefit in other clinical settings such as traumatic brain injury, stroke, and intracranial aneurysm surgery has not been demonstrated. Animal studies of local and systemic hypothermia in traumatic spinal cord injury models have produced mixed results. Local hypothermia was actively studied in the 1970s in human acute traumatic spinal cord injury, but no case series of

  8. Dopamine is produced in the rat spinal cord and regulates micturition reflex after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Hou, Shaoping; Carson, David M; Wu, Di; Klaw, Michelle C; Houlé, John D; Tom, Veronica J

    2016-11-01

    Dopamine (DA) neurons in the mammalian central nervous system are thought to be restricted to the brain. DA-mediated regulation of urinary activity is considered to occur through an interaction between midbrain DA neurons and the pontine micturition center. Here we show that DA is produced in the rat spinal cord and modulates the bladder reflex. We observed numerous tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)(+) neurons in the autonomic nuclei and superficial dorsal horn in L6-S3 spinal segments. These neurons are dopamine-β-hydroxylase (DBH)(-) and some contain detectable dopamine decarboxylase (DDC), suggesting their capacity to produce DA. Interestingly, following a complete thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI) to interrupt supraspinal projections, more TH(+) neurons emerged in the lumbosacral spinal cord, coincident with a sustained, low level of DA expression there and a partially recovered micturition reflex. Non-selective blockade of spinal DA receptors reduced bladder activity whereas activation of spinal D2-like receptors increased bladder activity and facilitated voiding. Additionally, depletion of lumbosacral TH(+) neurons with 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) decreased bladder non-voiding contractions and voiding efficiency. Furthermore, injecting the transsynaptic neuronal tracer pseudorabies virus (PRV) into the bladder detrusor labeled TH(+) cells in the lumbosacral cord, confirming their involvement in spinal micturition reflex circuits. These results illustrate that DA is synthesized in the rat spinal cord; plasticity of lumbosacral TH(+) neurons following SCI may contribute to DA expression and modulate the spinal bladder reflex. Thus, spinally-derived DA and receptors could be a novel therapeutic target to improve micturition recovery after SCI.

  9. Dopamine is produced in the rat spinal cord and regulates micturition reflex after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Shaoping; Carson, David M.; Wu, Di; Klaw, Michelle C.; Houlé, John D.; Tom, Veronica J.

    2016-01-01

    Dopamine (DA) neurons in the mammalian central nervous system are thought to be restricted to the brain. DA-mediated regulation of urinary activity is considered to occur through an interaction between midbrain DA neurons and the pontine micturition center. Here we show that DA is produced in the rat spinal cord and modulates the bladder reflex. We observed numerous tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)+ neurons in the autonomic nuclei and superficial dorsal horn in L6–S3 spinal segments. These neurons are dopamine-β-hydroxylase (DBH)− and some contain detectable dopamine decarboxylase (DDC), suggesting their capacity to produce DA. Interestingly, following a complete thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI) to interrupt supraspinal projections, more TH+ neurons emerged in the lumbosacral spinal cord, coincident with a sustained, low level of DA expression there and a partially recovered micturition reflex. Non-selective blockade of spinal DA receptors reduced bladder activity whereas activation of spinal D2-like receptors increased bladder activity and facilitated voiding. Additionally, depletion of lumbosacral TH+ neurons with 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) decreased bladder non-voiding contractions and voiding efficiency. Furthermore, injecting the transsynaptic neuronal tracer pseudorabies virus (PRV) into the bladder detrusor labeled TH+ cells in the lumbosacral cord, confirming their involvement in spinal micturition reflex circuits. These results illustrate that DA is synthesized in the rat spinal cord; plasticity of lumbosacral TH+ neurons following SCI may contribute to DA expression and modulate the spinal bladder reflex. Thus, spinally-derived DA and receptors could be a novel therapeutic target to improve micturition recovery after SCI. PMID:26655672

  10. Aquaporins in the Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Oklinski, Michal K.; Skowronski, Mariusz T.; Skowronska, Agnieszka; Rützler, Michael; Nørgaard, Kirsten; Nieland, John D.; Kwon, Tae-Hwan; Nielsen, Søren

    2016-01-01

    Aquaporins (AQPs) are water channel proteins robustly expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). A number of previous studies described the cellular expression sites and investigated their major roles and function in the brain and spinal cord. Among thirteen different mammalian AQPs, AQP1 and AQP4 have been mainly studied in the CNS and evidence has been presented that they play important roles in the pathogenesis of CNS injury, edema and multiple diseases such as multiple sclerosis, neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, glioblastoma multiforme, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. The objective of this review is to highlight the current knowledge about AQPs in the spinal cord and their proposed roles in pathophysiology and pathogenesis related to spinal cord lesions and injury. PMID:27941618

  11. Spinal Myoclonus After Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Calancie, Blair

    2006-01-01

    Background/Objective: In the course of examining spinal motor function in many hundreds of people with traumatic spinal cord injury, we encountered 6 individuals who developed involuntary and rhythmic contractions in muscles of their legs. Although there are many reports of unusual muscle activation patterns associated with different forms of myoclonus, we believe that certain aspects of the patterns seen with these 6 subjects have not been previously reported. These patterns share many features with those associated with a spinal central pattern generator for walking. Methods: Subjects in this case series had a history of chronic injury to the cervical spinal cord, resulting in either complete (ASIA A; n = 4) or incomplete (ASIA D; n = 2) quadriplegia. We used multi-channel electromyography recordings of trunk and leg muscles of each subject to document muscle activation patterns associated with different postures and as influenced by a variety of sensory stimuli. Results: Involuntary contractions spanned multiple leg muscles bilaterally, sometimes including weak abdominal contractions. Contractions were smooth and graded and were highly reproducible in rate for a given subject (contraction rates were 0.3–0.5 Hz). These movements did not resemble the brief rapid contractions (ie, "jerks") ascribed to some forms of spinal myoclonus. For all subjects, the onset of involuntary muscle contraction was dependent upon hip angle; contractions did not occur unless the hips (and knees) were extended (ie, subjects were supine). In the 4 ASIA A subjects, contractions occurred simultaneously in all muscles (agonists and antagonists) bilaterally. In sharp contrast, contractions in the 2 ASIA D subjects were reciprocal between agonists and antagonists within a limb and alternated between limbs, such that movements in these 2 subjects looked just like repetitive stepping. Finally, each of the 6 subjects had a distinct pathology of their spinal cord, nerve roots, distal trunk

  12. Evaluation of spinal cord injury animal models

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ning; Fang, Marong; Chen, Haohao; Gou, Fangming; Ding, Mingxing

    2014-01-01

    Because there is no curative treatment for spinal cord injury, establishing an ideal animal model is important to identify injury mechanisms and develop therapies for individuals suffering from spinal cord injuries. In this article, we systematically review and analyze various kinds of animal models of spinal cord injury and assess their advantages and disadvantages for further studies. PMID:25598784

  13. Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Adults

    MedlinePlus

    ... Search Search En Español Category Cancer A-Z Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Adults If you have a brain or spinal cord tumor or are close to ... cope. Here you can find out all about brain and spinal cord tumors in adults, including risk ...

  14. Spinal Cord Monitoring Data in Pediatric Spinal Deformity Patients With Spinal Cord Pathology.

    PubMed

    Aleem, Alexander W; Thuet, Earl D; Padberg, Anne M; Wallendorf, Michael; Luhmann, Scott J

    2015-01-01

    Retrospective. The purpose of this study is to review the efficacy of monitoring data and outcomes in pediatric patients with spinal cord pathology. The incidence of spinal cord pathology in pediatric patients with scoliosis has been reported between 3% and 20%. Previous studies demonstrated that intraoperative spinal cord monitoring (IOM) during scoliosis surgery can be reliable despite underlying pathology. A single-center retrospective review of 119 spinal surgery procedures in 82 patients with spinal cord pathology was performed. Diagnoses included Arnold-Chiari malformation, syringomyelia, myelomeningocele, spinal cord tumor, tethered cord, and diastematomyelia. Baseline neurologic function and history of prior neurosurgical intervention were identified. Outcome measures included ability to obtain reliable monitoring data during surgery and presence of postoperative neurologic deficits. Results were compared for 82 patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS). Usable IOM data were obtained in 82% of cases (97/119). Twenty-two cases (18%) had no lower extremity data. Patients with Arnold-Chiari malformation or syringomyelia pathologies, in isolation or together, had a significantly higher rate of reliable data compared to other pathologies (p < .0001). Among study group cases with usable data, there were 1 false negative (1%) and 4 true positive (4%) outcomes. There were no permanent neurologic deficits. The spinal cord pathology group demonstrated 80% sensitivity and 92% specificity. Spinal cord monitoring is a valuable tool in pediatric patients with spinal cord pathology undergoing spinal deformity surgeries. When obtained, data allow to detect changes in spinal cord function. Patients with a diagnosis of Arnold-Chiari or syringomyelia have monitoring data similar to those patients with AIS. Patients with other spinal cord pathologies have less reliable data, and surgeons should have a lower threshold for performing wake-up tests to assess spinal cord

  15. Enhancement of brain plasticity and recovery of locomotive function after lumbar spinal cord stimulation in combination with gait training with partial weight support in rats with cerebral ischemia.

    PubMed

    Choi, Yoon-Hee; Lee, Shi-Uk

    2017-02-22

    Lumbar spinal cord stimulation (LSCS) is reportedly effective for the recovery of locomotive intraspinal neural network, motor cortex and basal ganglia in animals with complete spinal cord injury and parkinsonism. We evaluated the effect of LSCS in combination with gait training on the recovery of locomotive function and brain plasticity using a rat model of brain ischemia. Adult male Sprague Dawley rats with ischemia were randomly assigned into one of four groups: sham treatment (group 1), LSCS only (group 2), LSCS with gait training and 50% (group 3) and 80% (group 4) of body weight support. Evaluations before randomization and 4 weeks after intervention included motor scoring index, real-time PCR and Western blot. Motor scoring index was significantly improved after the intervention in groups 2 and 3. The ratio of phospho-Protein Kinase C (PKC) to PKC measured in the infarcted area tended to be higher in groups 3 and 4. Protein expression of mGluR2 and mRNA expression of mGluR1 measured in the contralateral cortex were lower in groups 3 and 4. The ratio of phospho-Akt to Akt and mRNA expression of vascular endothelial growth factor measured in the ischemic border zone were higher in group 2. The mRNA expression of MAP1b measured in the infarcted area was significantly higher in group 2. The findings suggest that LSCS and gait training with an adequate amount of body weight support may promote brain plasticity and facilitate the functional recovery.

  16. Management of Chronic Spinal Cord Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Abrams, Gary M.; Ganguly, Karunesh

    2015-01-01

    Purpose of Review: Both acute and chronic spinal cord disorders present multisystem management problems to the clinician. This article highlights key issues associated with chronic spinal cord dysfunction. Recent Findings: Advances in symptomatic management for chronic spinal cord dysfunction include use of botulinum toxin to manage detrusor hyperreflexia, pregabalin for management of neuropathic pain, and intensive locomotor training for improved walking ability in incomplete spinal cord injuries. Summary: The care of spinal cord dysfunction has advanced significantly over the past 2 decades. Management and treatment of neurologic and non-neurologic complications of chronic myelopathies ensure that each patient will be able to maximize their functional independence and quality of life. PMID:25651225

  17. Pain following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Ullrich, Philip M

    2007-05-01

    Pain is one of the most common, severe, and treatment-resistant complications that follows SCI. Recent years have seen a surge of research on methods for assessing and treating spinal cord injury pain. In this article, pain after SCI is reviewed in terms of nature, scope, assessment techniques, and treatment strategies.

  18. Transection of Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Shulman, Stanford T.; Madden, John D.; Esterly, John R.; Shanklin, Douglas R.

    1971-01-01

    A newborn infant, delivered following mid-forceps rotation, presented with apnoea, anaesthesia below the level of the mid-neck, and flaccid quadriplegia. At necropsy there was transection of the cord, and atlanto-occipital and atlantoaxial dislocations. Cord injury usually follows breech presentation, the lesion is in the lower cervical or upper thoracic segments, and results from excessive traction. By contrast, in the rare cases following cephalic delivery, the lesion is most often in the upper cervical cord and probably results from rotational forces. PMID:5104538

  19. Endogenous neurotrophins and plasticity following spinal deafferentation.

    PubMed

    Ramer, Matt S

    2012-05-01

    Neurons intrinsic to the spinal cord dorsal horn receive input from various classes of long-distance projection systems. Two of the best known of these are primary afferent and descending monoaminergic axons. Together with intrinsic interneurons, activity in these axonal populations shapes the early part of the sensory experience before it is transmitted to supraspinal structures via ascending projection axons. Injury to dorsal roots, which contain the centrally projecting branches of primary afferent axons, results in their permanent disconnection from the spinal cord, as well as sensory dysfunction such as pain. In animals, experimental dorsal root injuries affecting a small number of roots produce dynamic behavioural changes, providing evidence for the now familiar concept that sensory processing at the level of the spinal cord is not hard-wired. Changes in behaviour following rhizotomy suggest changes in spinal sensory circuitry, and we and others have shown that the density of spinal serotonergic axons as well as processes of inhibitory interneurons increases following rhizotomy. Intact primary afferent axons are less apt to sprout into denervated territory. Recent work from our group has asked (1) what is the stimulus that induces sprouting of serotonergic (and other) axons and (2) what prevents spared primary afferent axons from occupying the territory of those lost to injury. This article will review the evidence that a single factor upregulated by dorsal root injury, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), underpins both serotonergic sprouting and a lack of primary afferent plasticity. BDNF also differentially modulates some of the behavioural consequences of dorsal root injury: antagonizing endogenous BDNF improves spontaneous mechanosensory recovery but prevents recovery from rhizotomy-induced hypersensitivity to cold. These findings reinforce the notion that in disease states as complex and variable as spinal cord injury, single pharmacological

  20. Spinal cord astrocytoma mimicking multifocal myelitis

    PubMed Central

    Neutel, Dulce; Teodoro, Tiago; Coelho, Miguel; Pimentel, José; Albuquerque, Luísa

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Differential diagnosis of acute/subacute intrinsic spinal cord lesions can be challenging. In addition, intramedullary neoplasms typically show gadolinium enhancement, mass effect, and cord expansion. Case report We report a patient with spinal cord and brain stem lesions resembling multifocal myelitis. Magnetic resonance imaging showed no spinal cord enlargement or gadolinium enhancing. Treatment of myelitis was undertaken without stopping the progression of the disease. Biopsy was made and led to a histological diagnosis of astrocytoma. Discussion Astrocytoma must remain as a possible diagnosis of spinal cord lesions, even without typical characteristics of neoplasms. Furthermore, biopsy should always be considered when diagnosis is uncertain. PMID:24621037

  1. Spinal cord pattern generators for locomotion.

    PubMed

    Dietz, V

    2003-08-01

    It is generally accepted that locomotion in mammals, including humans, is based on the activity of neuronal circuits within the spinal cord (the central pattern generator, CPG). Afferent information from the periphery (i.e. the limbs) influences the central pattern and, conversely, the CPG selects appropriate afferent information according to the external requirement. Both the CPG and the reflexes that mediate afferent input to the spinal cord are under the control of the brainstem. There is increasing evidence that in central motor diseases, a defective utilization of afferent input, in combination with secondary compensatory processes, is involved in typical movement disorders, such as spasticity and Parkinson's disease. Recent studies indicate a plastic behavior of the spinal neuronal circuits following a central motor lesion. This has implications for any rehabilitative therapy that should be directed to take advantage of the plasticity of the central nervous system. The significance of this research is in a better understanding of the pathophysiology underlying movement disorders and the consequences for an appropriate treatment.

  2. Psychological Aspects of Spinal Cord Injury

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cook, Daniel W.

    1976-01-01

    Reviewing literature on the psychological impact of spinal cord injury suggests: (a) depression may not be a precondition for injury adjustment; (b) many persons sustaining cord injury may have experienced psychological disruption prior to injury; and (c) indexes of rehabilitation success need to be developed for the spinal cord injured. (Author)

  3. Psychological Aspects of Spinal Cord Injury

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cook, Daniel W.

    1976-01-01

    Reviewing literature on the psychological impact of spinal cord injury suggests: (a) depression may not be a precondition for injury adjustment; (b) many persons sustaining cord injury may have experienced psychological disruption prior to injury; and (c) indexes of rehabilitation success need to be developed for the spinal cord injured. (Author)

  4. Disability, atrophy and cortical reorganization following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Freund, Patrick; Weiskopf, Nikolaus; Ward, Nick S; Hutton, Chloe; Gall, Angela; Ciccarelli, Olga; Craggs, Michael; Friston, Karl; Thompson, Alan J

    2011-06-01

    The impact of traumatic spinal cord injury on structural integrity, cortical reorganization and ensuing disability is variable and may depend on a dynamic interaction between the severity of local damage and the capacity of the brain for plastic reorganization. We investigated trauma-induced anatomical changes in the spinal cord and brain, and explored their relationship to functional changes in sensorimotor cortex. Structural changes were assessed using cross-sectional cord area, voxel-based morphometry and voxel-based cortical thickness of T1-weighted images in 10 subjects with cervical spinal cord injury and 16 controls. Cortical activation in response to right-sided (i) handgrip; and (ii) median and tibial nerve stimulation were assessed using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Regression analyses explored associations between cord area, grey and white matter volume, cortical activations and thickness, and disability. Subjects with spinal cord injury had impaired upper and lower limb function bilaterally, a 30% reduced cord area, smaller white matter volume in the pyramids and left cerebellar peduncle, and smaller grey matter volume and cortical thinning in the leg area of the primary motor and sensory cortex compared with controls. Functional magnetic resonance imaging revealed increased activation in the left primary motor cortex leg area during handgrip and the left primary sensory cortex face area during median nerve stimulation in subjects with spinal cord injury compared with controls, but no increased activation following tibial nerve stimulation. A smaller cervical cord area was associated with impaired upper limb function and increased activations with handgrip and median nerve stimulation, but reduced activations with tibial nerve stimulation. Increased sensory deficits were associated with increased activations in the left primary sensory cortex face area due to median nerve stimulation. In conclusion, spinal cord injury leads to cord atrophy

  5. The shortened spinal cord in tetraodontiform fishes.

    PubMed

    Uehara, Masato; Hosaka, Yoshinao Z; Doi, Hiroyuki; Sakai, Harumi

    2015-03-01

    In teleosts, the spinal cord generally extends along the entire vertebral canal. The Tetraodontiformes, in which the spinal cord is greatly reduced in length with a distinct long filum terminale and cauda equina, have been regarded as an aberration. The aims of this study are: 1) to elucidate whether the spinal cord in all tetraodontiform fishes shorten with the filum terminale, and 2) to describe the gross anatomical and histological differences in the spinal cord among all families of the Tetraodontiformes. Representative species from all families of the Tetraodontiformes, and for comparison the carp as a common teleost, were investigated. In the Triacanthodidae, Triacanthidae, and Triodontidae, which are the more ancestral taxa of the Tetraodontiformes, the spinal cord extends through the entire vertebral canal. In the Triacanthidae and Triodontidae, the caudal half or more spinal segments of the spinal cord, however, lack gray matter and consist largely of nerve fibers. In the other tetraodontiform families, the spinal cord is shortened forming a filum terminale with the cauda equina, which is prolonged as far as the last vertebra. The shortened spinal cord is divided into three groups. In the Ostraciidae and Molidae, the spinal cord tapers abruptly at the cranium or first vertebra forming a cord-like filum terminale. In the Monacanthidae, Tetraodontidae, and Diodontidae, it abruptly flattens at the rostral vertebrae forming a flat filum terminale. The spinal cord is relatively longer in the Monacanthidae than that in the other two families. It is suggested by histological features of the flat filum terminale that shortening of the spinal cord in this group progresses in order of the Monacanthidae, Tetraodontidae, and Diodontidae. In the Balistidae and Aracanidae, the cord is relatively long and then gradually decreased in dorso-ventral thickness.

  6. Astrocytes and Microglia-Mediated Immune Response in Maladaptive Plasticity is Differently Modulated by NGF in the Ventral Horn of the Spinal Cord Following Peripheral Nerve Injury.

    PubMed

    De Luca, Ciro; Savarese, Leonilde; Colangelo, Anna Maria; Bianco, Maria Rosaria; Cirillo, Giovanni; Alberghina, Lilia; Papa, Michele

    2016-01-01

    Reactive astrocytes and activated microglia are the key players in several pathophysiologic modifications of the central nervous system. We used the spared nerve injury (SNI) of the sciatic nerve to induce glial maladaptive response in the ventral horn of lumbar spinal cord and examine its role in the remodeling of the tripartite synapse plasticity. Imaging the ventral horn revealed that SNI was associated with both an early microglial and astrocytic activation, assessed, respectively, by analysis of Iba1 and GFAP expression. Microglia, in particular, localized peculiarly surrounding the motor neurons somata. Perineuronal astrocytes, which play a key role in maintaining the homeostasis of neuronal circuitry, underwent a substantial phenotypic change following peripheral axotomy, producing reactive gliosis. The gliosis was associated with the reduction of glial aminoacid transporters (GLT1 and GlyT1) and increase of neuronal glutamate transporter EAAC1. Although the expression of GABAergic neuronal marker GAD65/67 showed no change, glutamate increase, as demonstrated by HPLC analysis, shifted the excitatory/inhibitory balance as showed by the net increase of the glutamate/GABA ratio. Moreover, endogenous NGF levels were altered in SNI animals and not restored by the intrathecal NGF administration. This treatment reverted phenotypic changes associated with reactive astrocytosis, but failed to modify microglia activation. These findings on one hand confirm the correlation between gliopathy and maladaptive plasticity of the spinal synaptic circuitry, on the other hand add new data concerning the complex peculiar behavior of different glial cells in neuronal degenerative processes, defining a special role of microglia in sustaining the inflammatory response.

  7. Therapeutic approaches for spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Cristante, Alexandre Fogaça; de Barros Filho, Tarcísio Eloy Pessoa; Marcon, Raphael Martus; Letaif, Olavo Biraghi; da Rocha, Ivan Dias

    2012-01-01

    This study reviews the literature concerning possible therapeutic approaches for spinal cord injury. Spinal cord injury is a disabling and irreversible condition that has high economic and social costs. There are both primary and secondary mechanisms of damage to the spinal cord. The primary lesion is the mechanical injury itself. The secondary lesion results from one or more biochemical and cellular processes that are triggered by the primary lesion. The frustration of health professionals in treating a severe spinal cord injury was described in 1700 BC in an Egyptian surgical papyrus that was translated by Edwin Smith; the papyrus reported spinal fractures as a “disease that should not be treated.” Over the last two decades, several studies have been performed to obtain more effective treatments for spinal cord injury. Most of these studies approach a patient with acute spinal cord injury in one of four manners: corrective surgery or a physical, biological or pharmacological treatment method. Science is unraveling the mechanisms of cell protection and neuroregeneration, but clinically, we only provide supportive care for patients with spinal cord injuries. By combining these treatments, researchers attempt to enhance the functional recovery of patients with spinal cord injuries. Advances in the last decade have allowed us to encourage the development of experimental studies in the field of spinal cord regeneration. The combination of several therapeutic strategies should, at minimum, allow for partial functional recoveries for these patients, which could improve their quality of life. PMID:23070351

  8. Vascular dysfunctions following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Popa, F; Grigorean, VT; Onose, G; Sandu, AM; Popescu, M; Burnei, G; Strambu, V; Sinescu, C

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyze the vascular dysfunctions occurring after spinal cord injury (SCI). Vascular dysfunctions are common complications of SCI. Cardiovascular disturbances are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in both acute and chronic stages of SCI. Neuroanatomy and physiology of autonomic nervous system, sympathetic and parasympathetic, is reviewed. SCI implies disruption of descendent pathways from central centers to spinal sympathetic neurons, originating in intermediolateral nuclei of T1–L2 cord segments. Loss of supraspinal control over sympathetic nervous system results in reduced overall sympathetic activity below the level of injury and unopposed parasympathetic outflow through intact vagal nerve. SCI associates significant vascular dysfunction. Spinal shock occurs during the acute phase following SCI and it is a transitory suspension of function and reflexes below the level of the injury. Neurogenic shock, part of spinal shock, consists of severe arterial hypotension and bradycardia. Autonomic dysreflexia appears during the chronic phase, after spinal shock resolution, and it is a life–threatening syndrome of massive imbalanced reflex sympathetic discharge occurring in patients with SCI above the splanchnic sympathetic outflow (T5–T6). Arterial hypotension with orthostatic hypotension occurs in both acute and chronic phases. The etiology is multifactorial. We described a few factors influencing the orthostatic hypotension occurrence in SCI: sympathetic nervous system dysfunction, low plasma catecholamine levels, rennin–angiotensin–aldosterone activity, peripheral alpha–adrenoceptor hyperresponsiveness, impaired function of baroreceptors, hyponatremia and low plasmatic volume, cardiovascular deconditioning, morphologic changes in sympathetic neurons, plasticity within spinal circuits, and motor deficit leading to loss of skeletal muscle pumping activity. Additional associated cardiovascular concerns in SCI, such as

  9. Vascular dysfunctions following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Popa, Constantin; Popa, Florian; Grigorean, Valentin Titus; Onose, Gelu; Sandu, Aurelia Mihaela; Popescu, Mihai; Burnei, Gheorghe; Strambu, Victor; Sinescu, Crina

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyze the vascular dysfunctions occurring after spinal cord injury (SCI). Vascular dysfunctions are common complications of SCI. Cardiovascular disturbances are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in both acute and chronic stages of SCI. Neuroanatomy and physiology of autonomic nervous system, sympathetic and parasympathetic, is reviewed. SCI implies disruption of descendent pathways from central centers to spinal sympathetic neurons, originating in intermediolateral nuclei of T1-L2 cord segments. Loss of supraspinal control over sympathetic nervous system results in reduced overall sympathetic activity below the level of injury and unopposed parasympathetic outflow through intact vagal nerve. SCI associates significant vascular dysfunction. Spinal shock occurs during the acute phase following SCI and it is a transitory suspension of function and reflexes below the level of the injury. Neurogenic shock, part of spinal shock, consists of severe arterial hypotension and bradycardia. Autonomic dysreflexia appears during the chronic phase, after spinal shock resolution, and it is a life-threatening syndrome of massive imbalanced reflex sympathetic discharge occurring in patients with SCI above the splanchnic sympathetic outflow (T5-T6). Arterial hypotension with orthostatic hypotension occurs in both acute and chronic phases. The etiology is multifactorial. We described a few factors influencing the orthostatic hypotension occurrence in SCI: sympathetic nervous system dysfunction, low plasma catecholamine levels, rennin-angiotensin-aldosterone activity, peripheral alpha-adrenoceptor hyperresponsiveness, impaired function of baroreceptors, hyponatremia and low plasmatic volume, cardiovascular deconditioning, morphologic changes in sympathetic neurons, plasticity within spinal circuits, and motor deficit leading to loss of skeletal muscle pumping activity. Additional associated cardiovascular concerns in SCI, such as deep vein

  10. Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-10-01

    funded grant, we demonstrated proof-of-concept success of bridging a lateral hemisection of the rat spinal cord with engineered (“stretch-grown...AD_________________ Award Number: W81XWH-10-1-0941 TITLE: Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered...5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-10-1-0941 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR

  11. Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-10-01

    success of bridging a lateral hemisection in the rat spinal cord with engineered (“stretch-grown”) living nervous tissue constructs 2 . For the current...AD_________________ Award Number: W81XWH-10-1-0941 TITLE: Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered...SUBTITLE Spinal Cord Repair with Engineered Nervous Tissue 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-10-1-0941 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6

  12. Testosterone Plus Finasteride Treatment After Spinal Cord Injury

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2017-01-24

    Spinal Cord Injury; Spinal Cord Injuries; Trauma, Nervous System; Wounds and Injuries; Central Nervous System Diseases; Nervous System Diseases; Spinal Cord Diseases; Gonadal Disorders; Endocrine System Diseases; Hypogonadism; Genital Diseases, Male

  13. Survival Rates for Selected Childhood Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors

    MedlinePlus

    ... Diagnosis, and Staging Survival Rates for Selected Childhood Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors Survival rates are often ... Childhood Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors More In Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Children About Brain ...

  14. Alterations in cardiac autonomic control in spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Biering-Sørensen, Fin; Biering-Sørensen, Tor; Liu, Nan; Malmqvist, Lasse; Wecht, Jill Maria; Krassioukov, Andrei

    2017-02-15

    A spinal cord injury (SCI) interferes with the autonomic nervous system (ANS). The effect on the cardiovascular system will depend on the extent of damage to the spinal/central component of ANS. The cardiac changes are caused by loss of supraspinal sympathetic control and relatively increased parasympathetic cardiac control. Decreases in sympathetic activity result in heart rate and the arterial blood pressure changes, and may cause arrhythmias, in particular bradycardia, with the risk of cardiac arrest in those with cervical or high thoracic injuries. The objective of this review is to give an update of the current knowledge related to the alterations in cardiac autonomic control following SCI. With this purpose the review includes the following subheadings: 2. Neuro-anatomical plasticity and cardiac control 2.1 Autonomic nervous system and the heart 2.2 Alteration in autonomic control of the heart following spinal cord injury 3. Spinal shock and neurogenic shock 3.1 Pathophysiology of spinal shock 3.2 Pathophysiology of neurogenic shock 4. Autonomic dysreflexia 4.1 Pathophysiology of autonomic dysreflexia 4.2 Diagnosis of autonomic dysreflexia 5. Heart rate/electrocardiography following spinal cord injury 5.1 Acute phase 5.2 Chronic phase 6. Heart rate variability 6.1 Time domain analysis 6.2 Frequency domain analysis 6.3 QT-variability index 6.4 Nonlinear (fractal) indexes 7. Echocardiography 7.1 Changes in cardiac structure following spinal cord injury 7.2 Changes in cardiac function following spinal cord injury 8. International spinal cord injury cardiovascular basic data set and international standards to document the remaining autonomic function in spinal cord injury.

  15. Respiration following Spinal Cord Injury: Evidence for Human Neuroplasticity

    PubMed Central

    Hoh, Daniel J.; Mercier, Lynne M.; Hussey, Shaunn P.; Lane, Michael A.

    2013-01-01

    Respiratory dysfunction is one of the most devastating consequences of cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) with impaired breathing being a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in this population. However, there is mounting experimental and clinical evidence for moderate spontaneous respiratory recovery, or “plasticity”, after some spinal cord injuries. Pre-clinical models of respiratory dysfunction following SCI have demonstrated plasticity at neural and behavioral levels that result in progressive recovery of function. Temporal changes in respiration after human SCI have revealed some functional improvements suggesting plasticity paralleling that seen in experimental models – a concept that has been previously under-appreciated. While the extent of spontaneous recovery remains limited, it is possible that enhancing or facilitating neuroplastic mechanisms may have significant therapeutic potential. The next generation of treatment strategies for SCI and related respiratory dysfunction should aim to optimize these recovery processes of the injured spinal cord for lasting functional restoration. PMID:23891679

  16. Spinal cord compression in pseudohypoparathyroidism.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Timothy T; Khasnavis, Siddharth; Papaliodis, Dean N; Citone, Isabella; Carl, Allen L

    2013-12-01

    Spinal cord compression associated with pseudohypoparathyroidism (PHP) is an increasingly reported sequelae of the underlying metabolic syndrome. The association of neurologic dysfunction with PHP is not well appreciated. We believe this to be secondary to a combination of underlying congenital stenosis, manifest by short pedicles secondary to premature physeal closure, and hypertrophic ossification of the vertebral bony and ligamentous complexes. The purpose of this case report is to review the case of spinal stenosis in a child with PHP Type Ia. We are aware of only eight published reports of patients with PHP Type Ia and spinal stenosis-there are only two previously known cases of pediatric spinal stenosis secondary to PHP. This is a case report detailing the symptoms, diagnosis, interventions, complications, and ultimate outcomes of a pediatric patient undergoing spinal decompression and fusion for symptomatic stenosis secondary to PHP Type Ia. Literature search was reviewed regarding the reports of spinal stenosis and PHP, and the results are culminated and discussed. We report on a 14-year-old obese male with PHP and progressive lower extremity weakness secondary to congenital spinal stenosis. Examination revealed functional upper extremities with spastic paraplegia of bilateral lower extremities. The patient's neurologic function was cautiously monitored, but he deteriorated to a bed-bound state, preoperatively. The patient's chart was reviewed, summarized, and presented. Literature was searched using cross-reference of PHP and the terms "spinal stenosis," "myelopathy", "myelopathic," and "spinal cord compression." All relevant case reports were reviewed, and the results are discussed herein. The patient underwent decompression and instrumented fusion of T2-T11. He improved significantly with regard to lower extremity function, achieving unassisted ambulation function after extensive rehabilitation. Results from surgical decompression in previously reported

  17. Part 1: recognizing neonatal spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Brand, M Colleen

    2006-02-01

    Neonatal spinal cord injury can occur in utero, as well as after either a difficult delivery or a nontraumatic delivery. Spinal cord injury can also be related to invasive nursery procedures or underlying neonatal pathology. Early clinical signs of spinal cord injury that has occurred in utero or at delivery includes severe respiratory compromise and profound hypotonia. Knowledge of risk factors and awareness of symptoms is required for early recognition and appropriate treatment. This article reviews the embryological development of the spinal column highlighting mechanisms of injury and identifying underlying factors that increase the risk of spinal cord injury in newborns. Signs and symptoms of injury, cervical spine immobilization, and the differential diagnosis are discussed. Nursing implications, general prognosis, and research in spinal cord injury are provided.

  18. Nutrition of People with Spinal Cord Injuries

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    This conference proceeding summarizes current knowledge about the nutritional status and needs of the spinal cord injured patient. Topics covered include the aspects of spinal cord injury that influence nutrient intakes and status, and the nutrients most likely to be problematic in this diverse gro...

  19. Spinal Cord Injury: Hope through Research

    MedlinePlus

    ... many organ systems, including parts of the abdomen. Lumbar spinal nerves (L1 to L5) emerge from the spinal cord ... L2 vertebral body level. A thick set of nerves from the lumbar and sacral cord form the “cauda equina” in ...

  20. Cortical electrical stimulation promotes neuronal plasticity in the peri-ischemic cortex and contralesional anterior horn of cervical spinal cord in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemia.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jian; Liu, Lingtong; Xue, Xiaowei; Li, Hao; Wang, Shuo; Cao, Yong; Zhao, Jizong

    2013-04-04

    This study evaluated the effect of cortical electrical stimulation (CES) on function recovery, dendritic plasticity, astrogliosis, and neuron recruitment in the peri-ischemic cortex (PIC) and contralesional anterior horn of cervical spinal cord (CSC) in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemia. Rats were pre-trained on single pellet retrieval task, then received focal ischemic lesions and electrodes implantation. Seven days after surgery, rats received CES (CES group) or no stimulation (NS group) during 18 days of training. Behavior data on stimulation days 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18 were pooled for use. Immunohistochemical investigations for microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP-2), glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and neuronal nuclei antigen (NeuN) were performed. Rats in CES group showed greater functional recovery of the impaired forelimb compared to the NS group. Moreover, the functional improvement coincided with a significant increase in MAP-2-immunoreactive dendritic surface density in PIC and CSC (P=0.011; P=0.005, respectively). CES group had a significant decrease in GFAP-immunoreactive astrocytic surface density in PIC and CSC (P=0.039; P=0.013, respectively). In the immunoassaying of NeuN, there was no significant difference between the two groups in PIC and CSC (P=0.834, P=0.782, respectively). CES can promote dendritic plasticity and reduce astrogliosis in the PIC and CSC in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemia. CES is still an appealing method for post-stroke rehabilitation provided that viability of pathways is evaluated presurgically. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Short-term Cortical Plasticity Associated With Feedback-Error Learning After Locomotor Training in a Patient With Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Peters, Sue; Borich, Michael R.; Boyd, Lara A.; Lam, Tania

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose For rehabilitation strategies to be effective, training should be based on principles of motor learning, such as feedback-error learning, that facilitate adaptive processes in the nervous system by inducing errors and recalibration of sensory and motor systems. This case report suggests that locomotor resistance training can enhance somatosensory and corticospinal excitability and modulate resting-state brain functional connectivity in a patient with motor-incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI). Case Description The short-term cortical plasticity of a 31-year-old man who had sustained an incomplete SCI 9.5 years previously was explored in response to body-weight–supported treadmill training with velocity-dependent resistance applied with a robotic gait orthosis. The following neurophysiological and neuroimaging measures were recorded before and after training. Sensory evoked potentials were elicited by electrical stimulation of the tibial nerve and recorded from the somatosensory cortex. Motor evoked potentials were generated with transcranial magnetic stimulation applied over the tibialis anterior muscle representation in the primary motor cortex. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was performed to evaluate short-term changes in patterns of brain activity associated with locomotor training. Outcomes Somatosensory excitability and corticospinal excitability were observed to increase after locomotor resistance training. Motor evoked potentials increased (particularly at higher stimulation intensities), and seed-based resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging analyses revealed increased functional connectivity strength in the motor cortex associated with the less affected side after training. Discussion The observations suggest evidence of short-term cortical plasticity in 3 complementary neurophysiological measures after one session of locomotor resistance training. Future investigation in a sample of people with

  2. Nerve growth factor-mediated neuronal plasticity in spinal cord contributes to neonatal maternal separation-induced visceral hypersensitivity in rats.

    PubMed

    Tsang, S W; Zhao, M; Wu, J; Sung, J J Y; Bian, Z-X

    2012-04-01

    Visceral hyperalgesia is a multifactorial gastrointestinal disorder which featured with alterations of abdominal motility and/or gut sensitivity, and is believed to be triggered by environmental stressor or psychological factors. However, its etiology remains incompletely understood. In this study, we aimed to investigate whether nerve growth factor (NGF)-mediated neuronal plasticity is involved in neonatal maternal separation (NMS)-induced visceral hypersensitivity in adult rats, and whether NGF antagonist can attenuate or block such development. In our experiments, animals subjected to NMS were developed with visceral hyperalgesia at age of 8 weeks. The threshold for visceral pain among these NMS rats was remarkably lowered than that of the normal handling (NH) rats; however, the expression levels of NGF, c-fos, calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), Substance P, and tyrosine kinases A (TrkA) were notably elevated in lumbosacral spinal cord and/or dorsal root ganglion (DRG) when comparing to those of the NH rats. Further, as intra-peritoneal administration of NGF (10 μl at 1 μg/kg/day) was given to NH rats during neonatal period, effects that comparable to NMS induction were observed in the adulthood. In contrast, when NMS rats were treated with NGF antagonist K252a (10 μl/day from postnatal days 2-14), which acts against tyrosine kinases, the neonatal stress-induced down-shifted visceral pain threshold was restored and neuronal activation, specifically NGF and neuropeptide production, was attenuated. In conclusion, our data strongly suggest that NGF triggers neuronal plasticity and plays a crucial role in NMS-induced visceral hypersensitivity in which NGF antagonism provides positive inhibition via blocking the tyrosine phosphorylation of TrkA.

  3. Short-term cortical plasticity associated with feedback-error learning after locomotor training in a patient with incomplete spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Amanda E; Peters, Sue; Borich, Michael R; Boyd, Lara A; Lam, Tania

    2015-02-01

    For rehabilitation strategies to be effective, training should be based on principles of motor learning, such as feedback-error learning, that facilitate adaptive processes in the nervous system by inducing errors and recalibration of sensory and motor systems. This case report suggests that locomotor resistance training can enhance somatosensory and corticospinal excitability and modulate resting-state brain functional connectivity in a patient with motor-incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI). The short-term cortical plasticity of a 31-year-old man who had sustained an incomplete SCI 9.5 years previously was explored in response to body-weight-supported treadmill training with velocity-dependent resistance applied with a robotic gait orthosis. The following neurophysiological and neuroimaging measures were recorded before and after training. Sensory evoked potentials were elicited by electrical stimulation of the tibial nerve and recorded from the somatosensory cortex. Motor evoked potentials were generated with transcranial magnetic stimulation applied over the tibialis anterior muscle representation in the primary motor cortex. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was performed to evaluate short-term changes in patterns of brain activity associated with locomotor training. Somatosensory excitability and corticospinal excitability were observed to increase after locomotor resistance training. Motor evoked potentials increased (particularly at higher stimulation intensities), and seed-based resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging analyses revealed increased functional connectivity strength in the motor cortex associated with the less affected side after training. The observations suggest evidence of short-term cortical plasticity in 3 complementary neurophysiological measures after one session of locomotor resistance training. Future investigation in a sample of people with incomplete SCI will enhance the understanding of potential neural

  4. Sphingolipids in spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Zachary B; Ren, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a debilitating condition that affects millions of individuals worldwide. Despite progress over the last few decades, the molecular mechanisms of secondary SCI that continue to occur days and weeks after the original trauma remain poorly understood. As a result, current therapies for SCI are only marginally effective. Sphingolipids, a diverse class of bioactive lipids, have been shown to regulate SCI repair and key secondary injury processes such as apoptosis, ischemia and inflammation. This review will discuss the numerous roles of sphingolipids and highlight the potential of sphingolipid-targeted therapies for SCI. PMID:27570580

  5. Spinal cord ischemia secondary to hypovolemic shock.

    PubMed

    Oh, Jacob Yl; Kapoor, Siddhant; Koh, Roy Km; Yang, Eugene Wr; Hee, Hwan-Tak

    2014-12-01

    A 44-year-old male presented with symptoms of spinal cord compression secondary to metastatic prostate cancer. An urgent decompression at the cervical-thoracic region was performed, and there were no complications intraoperatively. Three hours postoperatively, the patient developed acute bilateral lower-limb paralysis (motor grade 0). Clinically, he was in class 3 hypovolemic shock. An urgent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed, showing no epidural hematoma. He was managed aggressively with medical therapy to improve his spinal cord perfusion. The patient improved significantly, and after one week, he was able to regain most of his motor functions. Although not commonly reported, spinal cord ischemia post-surgery should be recognized early, especially in the presence of hypovolemic shock. MRI should be performed to exclude other potential causes of compression. Spinal cord ischemia needs to be managed aggressively with medical treatment to improve spinal cord perfusion. The prognosis depends on the severity of deficits, and is usually favorable.

  6. Galactorrhea: a complication of spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Yarkony, G M; Novick, A K; Roth, E J; Kirschner, K L; Rayner, S; Betts, H B

    1992-09-01

    Galactorrhea, a secretion of milk or milk-like products from the breast in the absence of parturition, has been reported to occur in women with spinal cord injuries in association with amenorrhea and hyperprolactinemia. Four cases of galactorrhea in association with spinal cord injury are reported. Galactorrhea developed in four spinal cord injured women who had thoracic paraplegia. The onset of galactorrhea was from one month to five months after injury. Although the onset of galactorrhea may have been related to prescribed medications in all four cases, insufficient data exist to draw conclusions. The three women whose galactorrhea persisted declined treatment and galactorrhea continuing for more than two years in one instance. We conclude that galactorrhea with or without amenorrhea may develop after a spinal cord injury and that spinal cord injured women may have an enhanced sensitivity to medication-induced galactorrhea.

  7. [Therapy progress of spinal cord compression by metastatic spinal tumor].

    PubMed

    Liu, Yao-sheng; He, Qi-zhen; Liu, Shu-bin; Jiang, Wei-gang; Lei, Ming-xing

    2016-01-01

    Metastatic epidural compression of the spinal cord is a significant source of morbidity in patients with systemic cancer. With improvment of oncotheray, survival period in the patients is improving and metastatic cord compression is en- countered increasingly often. Surgical management performed for early circumferential decompression for the spinal cord com- pression with spine instability, and spine reconstruction performed. Patients with radiosensitive tumours without spine instabili- ty, radiotherapy is an effective therapy. Spinal stereotactic radiosurgery and minimally invasive techniques, such as vertebro- plasty and kyphoplasty, percutaneous pedicle screw fixation, radiofrequency ablation are promising options for treatment of cer- tain selected patients with spinal metastases.

  8. A Neonatal Mouse Spinal Cord Compression Injury Model

    PubMed Central

    Züchner, Mark; Glover, Joel C.; Boulland, Jean-Luc

    2016-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) typically causes devastating neurological deficits, particularly through damage to fibers descending from the brain to the spinal cord. A major current area of research is focused on the mechanisms of adaptive plasticity that underlie spontaneous or induced functional recovery following SCI. Spontaneous functional recovery is reported to be greater early in life, raising interesting questions about how adaptive plasticity changes as the spinal cord develops. To facilitate investigation of this dynamic, we have developed a SCI model in the neonatal mouse. The model has relevance for pediatric SCI, which is too little studied. Because neural plasticity in the adult involves some of the same mechanisms as neural plasticity in early life1, this model may potentially have some relevance also for adult SCI. Here we describe the entire procedure for generating a reproducible spinal cord compression (SCC) injury in the neonatal mouse as early as postnatal (P) day 1. SCC is achieved by performing a laminectomy at a given spinal level (here described at thoracic levels 9-11) and then using a modified Yasargil aneurysm mini-clip to rapidly compress and decompress the spinal cord. As previously described, the injured neonatal mice can be tested for behavioral deficits or sacrificed for ex vivo physiological analysis of synaptic connectivity using electrophysiological and high-throughput optical recording techniques1. Earlier and ongoing studies using behavioral and physiological assessment have demonstrated a dramatic, acute impairment of hindlimb motility followed by a complete functional recovery within 2 weeks, and the first evidence of changes in functional circuitry at the level of identified descending synaptic connections1. PMID:27078037

  9. Relationship between Spinal Cord Volume and Spinal Cord Injury due to Spinal Shortening

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Feng; Yang, Jin-Cheng; Ma, Xiang-Yang; Xu, Jun-Jie; Yang, Qing-Lei; Zhou, Xin; Xiao, Yao-Sheng; Hu, Hai-Sheng; Xia, Li-Hui

    2015-01-01

    Vertebral column resection is associated with a risk of spinal cord injury. In the present study, using a goat model, we aimed to investigate the relationship between changes in spinal cord volume and spinal cord injury due to spinal shortening, and to quantify the spinal cord volume per 1-mm height in order to clarify a safe limit for shortening. Vertebral column resection was performed at T10 in 10 goats. The spinal cord was shortened until the somatosensory-evoked potential was decreased by 50% from the baseline amplitude or delayed by 10% relative to the baseline peak latency. A wake-up test was performed, and the goats were observed for two days postoperatively. Magnetic resonance imaging was used to measure the spinal cord volume, T10 height, disc height, osteotomy segment height, and spinal segment height pre- and postoperatively. Two of the 10 goats were excluded, and hence, only data from eight goats were analyzed. The somatosensory-evoked potential of these eight goats demonstrated meaningful changes. With regard to neurologic function, five and three goats were classified as Tarlov grades 5 and 4 at two days postoperatively. The mean shortening distance was 23.6 ± 1.51 mm, which correlated with the d-value (post-pre) of the spinal cord volume per 1-mm height of the osteotomy segment (r = 0.95, p < 0.001) and with the height of the T10 body (r = 0.79, p = 0.02). The mean d-value (post-pre) of the spinal cord volume per 1-mm height of the osteotomy segment was 142.87 ± 0.59 mm3 (range, 142.19–143.67 mm3). The limit for shortening was approximately 106% of the vertebral height. The mean volumes of the osteotomy and spinal segments did not significantly change after surgery (t = 0.310, p = 0.765 and t = 1.241, p = 0.255, respectively). Thus, our results indicate that the safe limit for shortening can be calculated using the change in spinal cord volume per 1-mm height. PMID:26001196

  10. Topologically preserving straightening of spinal cord MRI.

    PubMed

    De Leener, Benjamin; Mangeat, Gabriel; Dupont, Sara; Martin, Allan R; Callot, Virginie; Stikov, Nikola; Fehlings, Michael G; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2017-10-01

    To propose a robust and accurate method for straightening magnetic resonance (MR) images of the spinal cord, based on spinal cord segmentation, that preserves spinal cord topology and that works for any MRI contrast, in a context of spinal cord template-based analysis. The spinal cord curvature was computed using an iterative Non-Uniform Rational B-Spline (NURBS) approximation. Forward and inverse deformation fields for straightening were computed by solving analytically the straightening equations for each image voxel. Computational speed-up was accomplished by solving all voxel equation systems as one single system. Straightening accuracy (mean and maximum distance from straight line), computational time, and robustness to spinal cord length was evaluated using the proposed and the standard straightening method (label-based spline deformation) on 3T T2 - and T1 -weighted images from 57 healthy subjects and 33 patients with spinal cord compression due to degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM). The proposed algorithm was more accurate, more robust, and faster than the standard method (mean distance = 0.80 vs. 0.83 mm, maximum distance = 1.49 vs. 1.78 mm, time = 71 vs. 174 sec for the healthy population and mean distance = 0.65 vs. 0.68 mm, maximum distance = 1.28 vs. 1.55 mm, time = 32 vs. 60 sec for the DCM population). A novel image straightening method that enables template-based analysis of quantitative spinal cord MRI data is introduced. This algorithm works for any MRI contrast and was validated on healthy and patient populations. The presented method is implemented in the Spinal Cord Toolbox, an open-source software for processing spinal cord MRI data. 1 Technical Efficacy: Stage 1 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2017;46:1209-1219. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.

  11. [Traumatic recurrence of idiopathic spinal cord herniation].

    PubMed

    Lorente-Muñoz, Asís; Cortés-Franco, Severiano; Moles-Herbera, Jesús; Casado-Pellejero, Juan; Rivero-Celada, David; Alberdi-Viñas, Juan

    2013-01-01

    Idiopathic spinal cord herniation is a rare cause of thoracic myelopathy and its recurrence is even more infrequent. Cord herniation is through an anterior dural defect in thoracic spine with unknown causes. Symptomatic cases must be surgically treated to reduce the hernia and seal the defect to prevent recurrences. We report a patient presenting a Brown-Séquard syndrome secondary to a D5 spinal cord herniation treated successfully and its posterior traumatic recurrence.

  12. An analysis of plasticity in the rat respiratory system following cervical spinal cord injury and the application of nanotechnology to induce or enhance recovery of diaphragm function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Janelle

    Second cervical segment spinal cord hemisection (C2Hx) results in ipsilateral hemidiaphragm paralysis. However, the intact latent crossed phrenic pathway can restore function spontaneously over time or immediately following drug administration. WGA bound fluorochromes were administered to identify nuclei associated with diaphragm function in both the acute and chronic C2Hx models. WGA is unique in that it undergoes receptor mediated endocytosis and is transsynaptically transported across select physiologically active synapses. Comparison of labeling in the acutely injured to the chronically injured rat provided an anatomical map of spinal and supraspinal injury induced synaptic plasticity. The plasticity occurs over time in the chronic C2Hx model in an effort to adapt to the loss of hemidiaphragm function. Utilizing the selectivity of WGA, a nanoconjugate was developed to target drug delivery to nuclei involved in diaphragm function post C2Hx in an effort to restore lost function. Theophylline was selected due to its established history as a respiratory stimulant. Theophylline was attached to gold nanoparticles by a transient bond designed to degrade intracellularly. The gold nanoparticles were then permanently attached to WGA-HRP. Following intradiaphragmatic injection, the WGA portion was identified in the ipsilateral phrenic nuclei and bilaterally in the rVRGs. The location of WGA should reflect the location of the AuNP since the peptide bond between them is permanent. The effectiveness of the nanoconjugate was verified with EMG analysis of the diaphragm and recordings from the phrenic nerves. All doses administered in the acute C2Hx model resulted in resorted hemidiaphragm and phrenic nerve activity. A dose of 0.14mg/kg had a significantly higher percent recovery on day 3, whereas 0.03mg/kg was significantly higher on day 14. The change in most effective dose over time is likely due to the availability or concentration of the drug and location of drug release

  13. [Osteoporosis associated with spinal cord lesion].

    PubMed

    Miladinović, Ksenija; Vavra-Hadziahmetović, Narcisa; Muftić, Mirsad; Sakota, Slavica

    2007-01-01

    One of the complications caused by spinal lesion is osteoporosis which development is induced by lesion itself, and its mechanism is not explained enough. Risk factor of this kind of osteoporosis is fracture which management is difficult and is cause of further complications which aggravate already damaged quality of life of patients with spinal cord injury, and demand additional health insurance expenses. Importance of prevention and treatment of spinal cord injury induced osteoporosis is enlightened by case report.

  14. Rehabilitation of spinal cord injuries

    PubMed Central

    Nas, Kemal; Yazmalar, Levent; Şah, Volkan; Aydın, Abdulkadir; Öneş, Kadriye

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is the injury of the spinal cord from the foramen magnum to the cauda equina which occurs as a result of compulsion, incision or contusion. The most common causes of SCI in the world are traffic accidents, gunshot injuries, knife injuries, falls and sports injuries. There is a strong relationship between functional status and whether the injury is complete or not complete, as well as the level of the injury. The results of SCI bring not only damage to independence and physical function, but also include many complications from the injury. Neurogenic bladder and bowel, urinary tract infections, pressure ulcers, orthostatic hypotension, fractures, deep vein thrombosis, spasticity, autonomic dysreflexia, pulmonary and cardiovascular problems, and depressive disorders are frequent complications after SCI. SCI leads to serious disability in the patient resulting in the loss of work, which brings psychosocial and economic problems. The treatment and rehabilitation period is long, expensive and exhausting in SCI. Whether complete or incomplete, SCI rehabilitation is a long process that requires patience and motivation of the patient and relatives. Early rehabilitation is important to prevent joint contractures and the loss of muscle strength, conservation of bone density, and to ensure normal functioning of the respiratory and digestive system. An interdisciplinary approach is essential in rehabilitation in SCI, as in the other types of rehabilitation. The team is led by a physiatrist and consists of the patients’ family, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, dietician, psychologist, speech therapist, social worker and other consultant specialists as necessary. PMID:25621206

  15. Rehabilitation of spinal cord injuries.

    PubMed

    Nas, Kemal; Yazmalar, Levent; Şah, Volkan; Aydın, Abdulkadir; Öneş, Kadriye

    2015-01-18

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is the injury of the spinal cord from the foramen magnum to the cauda equina which occurs as a result of compulsion, incision or contusion. The most common causes of SCI in the world are traffic accidents, gunshot injuries, knife injuries, falls and sports injuries. There is a strong relationship between functional status and whether the injury is complete or not complete, as well as the level of the injury. The results of SCI bring not only damage to independence and physical function, but also include many complications from the injury. Neurogenic bladder and bowel, urinary tract infections, pressure ulcers, orthostatic hypotension, fractures, deep vein thrombosis, spasticity, autonomic dysreflexia, pulmonary and cardiovascular problems, and depressive disorders are frequent complications after SCI. SCI leads to serious disability in the patient resulting in the loss of work, which brings psychosocial and economic problems. The treatment and rehabilitation period is long, expensive and exhausting in SCI. Whether complete or incomplete, SCI rehabilitation is a long process that requires patience and motivation of the patient and relatives. Early rehabilitation is important to prevent joint contractures and the loss of muscle strength, conservation of bone density, and to ensure normal functioning of the respiratory and digestive system. An interdisciplinary approach is essential in rehabilitation in SCI, as in the other types of rehabilitation. The team is led by a physiatrist and consists of the patients' family, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, dietician, psychologist, speech therapist, social worker and other consultant specialists as necessary.

  16. Segmentation of the human spinal cord.

    PubMed

    De Leener, Benjamin; Taso, Manuel; Cohen-Adad, Julien; Callot, Virginie

    2016-04-01

    Segmenting the spinal cord contour is a necessary step for quantifying spinal cord atrophy in various diseases. Delineating gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) is also useful for quantifying GM atrophy or for extracting multiparametric MRI metrics into specific WM tracts. Spinal cord segmentation in clinical research is not as developed as brain segmentation, however with the substantial improvement of MR sequences adapted to spinal cord MR investigations, the field of spinal cord MR segmentation has advanced greatly within the last decade. Segmentation techniques with variable accuracy and degree of complexity have been developed and reported in the literature. In this paper, we review some of the existing methods for cord and WM/GM segmentation, including intensity-based, surface-based, and image-based methods. We also provide recommendations for validating spinal cord segmentation techniques, as it is important to understand the intrinsic characteristics of the methods and to evaluate their performance and limitations. Lastly, we illustrate some applications in the healthy and pathological spinal cord. One conclusion of this review is that robust and automatic segmentation is clinically relevant, as it would allow for longitudinal and group studies free from user bias as well as reproducible multicentric studies in large populations, thereby helping to further our understanding of the spinal cord pathophysiology and to develop new criteria for early detection of subclinical evolution for prognosis prediction and for patient management. Another conclusion is that at the present time, no single method adequately segments the cord and its substructure in all the cases encountered (abnormal intensities, loss of contrast, deformation of the cord, etc.). A combination of different approaches is thus advised for future developments, along with the introduction of probabilistic shape models. Maturation of standardized frameworks, multiplatform availability, inclusion

  17. Treadmill training promotes spinal changes leading to locomotor recovery after partial spinal cord injury in cats.

    PubMed

    Martinez, Marina; Delivet-Mongrain, Hugo; Rossignol, Serge

    2013-06-01

    After a spinal hemisection at thoracic level in cats, the paretic hindlimb progressively recovers locomotion without treadmill training but asymmetries between hindlimbs persist for several weeks and can be seen even after a further complete spinal transection at T13. To promote optimal locomotor recovery after hemisection, such asymmetrical changes need to be corrected. In the present study we determined if the locomotor deficits induced by a spinal hemisection can be corrected by locomotor training and, if so, whether the spinal stepping after the complete spinal cord transection is also more symmetrical. This would indicate that locomotor training in the hemisected period induces efficient changes in the spinal cord itself. Sixteen adult cats were first submitted to a spinal hemisection at T10. One group received 3 wk of treadmill training, whereas the second group did not. Detailed kinematic and electromyographic analyses showed that a 3-wk period of locomotor training was sufficient to improve the quality and symmetry of walking of the hindlimbs. Moreover, after the complete spinal lesion was performed, all the trained cats reexpressed bilateral and symmetrical hindlimb locomotion within 24 h. By contrast, the locomotor pattern of the untrained cats remained asymmetrical, and the hindlimb on the side of the hemisection was still deficient. This study highlights the beneficial role of locomotor training in facilitating bilateral and symmetrical functional plastic changes within the spinal circuitry and in promoting locomotor recovery after an incomplete spinal cord injury.

  18. Chronic pain following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Rekand, Tiina; Hagen, Ellen Merete; Grønning, Marit

    2012-04-30

    Chronic pain following spinal cord injury is common, and may result in a substantially reduced quality of life. The aim of the paper is to provide an overview of pain conditions resulting from spinal cord injuries and an update on therapy options. The article is based on literature searches in PubMed review articles for the period 2006-2011, using the search phrases «pain and spinal cord injury/injuries», «chronic pain and spinal cord injury/injuries» and «neuropathic pain and spinal cord injury/injuries». Some key articles on neuropathic pain are also included, irrespective of the year of publication. Patients with spinal cord injury may develop nociceptive and/or neuropathic pain.The cause, nature and localisation of the pain must be established before therapy is initiated. Neuropathic pain should primarily be treated with amitriptyline, gabapentin or pregabalin. Duloxetine, lamotrigine and tramadol may also be effective. Local treatment with high-concentration capsaicin and lidocaine may relieve localised neuropathic pain. Selected patients with intractable chronic neuropathic pain can be treated with intrathecal medication using an implanted pain pump or by microsurgical DREZotomy (Dorsal Root Entry Zone). Physiotherapy, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and opioids are most widely used for treating nociceptive pain. Physical exercise and acupuncture may provide relief from shoulder pain. There may be several causes of chronic pain following spinal cord injury. Different measures have been tested for the management of chronic pain after spinal cord injury, but most studies have been performed on a limited number of patients. Further studies are needed to find more effective means of relieving pain following spinal cord injuries.

  19. Targeting Lumbar Spinal Neural Circuitry by Epidural Stimulation to Restore Motor Function After Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Minassian, Karen; McKay, W Barry; Binder, Heinrich; Hofstoetter, Ursula S

    2016-04-01

    Epidural spinal cord stimulation has a long history of application for improving motor control in spinal cord injury. This review focuses on its resurgence following the progress made in understanding the underlying neurophysiological mechanisms and on recent reports of its augmentative effects upon otherwise subfunctional volitional motor control. Early work revealed that the spinal circuitry involved in lower-limb motor control can be accessed by stimulating through electrodes placed epidurally over the posterior aspect of the lumbar spinal cord below a paralyzing injury. Current understanding is that such stimulation activates large-to-medium-diameter sensory fibers within the posterior roots. Those fibers then trans-synaptically activate various spinal reflex circuits and plurisegmentally organized interneuronal networks that control more complex contraction and relaxation patterns involving multiple muscles. The induced change in responsiveness of this spinal motor circuitry to any residual supraspinal input via clinically silent translesional neural connections that have survived the injury may be a likely explanation for rudimentary volitional control enabled by epidural stimulation in otherwise paralyzed muscles. Technological developments that allow dynamic control of stimulation parameters and the potential for activity-dependent beneficial plasticity may further unveil the remarkable capacity of spinal motor processing that remains even after severe spinal cord injuries.

  20. Nanomedicine for treating spinal cord injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tyler, Jacqueline Y.; Xu, Xiao-Ming; Cheng, Ji-Xin

    2013-09-01

    Spinal cord injury results in significant mortality and morbidity, lifestyle changes, and difficult rehabilitation. Treatment of spinal cord injury is challenging because the spinal cord is both complex to treat acutely and difficult to regenerate. Nanomaterials can be used to provide effective treatments; their unique properties can facilitate drug delivery to the injury site, enact as neuroprotective agents, or provide platforms to stimulate regrowth of damaged tissues. We review recent uses of nanomaterials including nanowires, micelles, nanoparticles, liposomes, and carbon-based nanomaterials for neuroprotection in the acute phase. We also review the design and neural regenerative application of electrospun scaffolds, conduits, and self-assembling peptide scaffolds.

  1. Fitness and Spinal Cord Injuries

    PubMed Central

    Mackie, J. William; McCormack, Rebecca; Campbell, Duncan

    1989-01-01

    Activity for many disabled persons often begins as therapy, but the additional rewards derived from exercise must be appreciated. Public attitudes toward disabled persons have changed during the last few decades, recently focusing on abilities rather than on disabilities. The family physician of patients with spinal cord injuries will assist in managing acute medical problems and the association with loss of some degree of physical capacity. Physicians also can guide these individuals to choose a life that remains active and interesting over a “house-bound,” but safe, existence. Sensitivity and timing play key roles in establishing exercise as an intergral part of a disabled individuals' altered lifestyle. The physician can advocate increased access to wheelchairs and other facilities that make life easier for disabled individuals. ImagesFigure 1Figure 2Figure 3Figure 4 PMID:21248871

  2. Spinal cord injury in youth.

    PubMed

    Apple, D F; Anson, C A; Hunter, J D; Bell, R B

    1995-02-01

    To identify special characteristics of the pediatric spinal cord-injured (SCI) population, we analyzed a database of 1,770 traumatic SCI patients; 88 (5%) fell into the two pediatric subgroups: 0-12 years (n = 26) and 13-15 years (n = 62) at time of injury. Differences between age groups were identified with regard to demographics, neurologic characteristics, associated injuries and complications, and management. Mode level of bony injury was C2 in preteens, C4 in teens, and C4-C5 in adults. Scoliosis developed far more frequently in children, particularly preteens (23%), than in adults (5%). Violent etiologies, predominantly gunshots, accounted for a disproportionate share of injuries to preteens (19%) and African-Americans (28%), as compared with adults (12%) and Caucasians (7%). This last finding underscores the urgent need to mount a response to the nationwide proliferation of gunshot-related SCI in children and minorities.

  3. Spinal cord transection in the larval zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Briona, Lisa K; Dorsky, Richard I

    2014-05-21

    Mammals fail in sensory and motor recovery following spinal cord injury due to lack of axonal regrowth below the level of injury as well as an inability to reinitiate spinal neurogenesis. However, some anamniotes including the zebrafish Danio rerio exhibit both sensory and functional recovery even after complete transection of the spinal cord. The adult zebrafish is an established model organism for studying regeneration following spinal cord injury, with sensory and motor recovery by 6 weeks post-injury. To take advantage of in vivo analysis of the regenerative process available in the transparent larval zebrafish as well as genetic tools not accessible in the adult, we use the larval zebrafish to study regeneration after spinal cord transection. Here we demonstrate a method for reproducibly and verifiably transecting the larval spinal cord. After transection, our data shows sensory recovery beginning at 2 days post-injury (dpi), with the C-bend movement detectable by 3 dpi and resumption of free swimming by 5 dpi. Thus we propose the larval zebrafish as a companion tool to the adult zebrafish for the study of recovery after spinal cord injury.

  4. Spinal cord lesions - The rehabilitation perspective.

    PubMed

    Faria, Filipa

    2006-02-01

    The present study provides an overview of the spinal cord injury focusing mainly on aspects related to rehabilitation. Spinal cord injury affects young people in an active phase of life, determining severe handicaps. Most of the lesions are traumatic, caused by car accidents. Until fifty years ago, the survival of individuals with spinal cord injury was very reduced and the leading cause of death was renal failure. Due to developments in medical knowledge and technical advances, the survival rates have significantly improved. The causes of death have also changed being respiratory complications, particularly pneumonia, the leading causes. Immediately after a spinal cord lesion there is a phase of spinal shock which is characterized by flaccid paralysis and bladder and bowel retention. Progressively there is a return of the spinal cord automatism with the beginning of some reflex activities. Based on neurological evaluation it is pos-sible to predict motor and functional recovery and establish the rehabilitation program. We can consider three phases on the rehabilitation program: the first while the patient is still in bed, directed to prevent or treat complications due to immobility and begin sphincters reeducation; the second phase is intended to achieve wheelchair autonomy; the last phase is training in ortostatism. The rehabilitation program also comprises sports and recreational activities, psychological and social support in order to achieve an integral of the individual with a spinal cord injury.

  5. Cardiovascular control after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Gondim, F A A; Lopes, A C A; Oliveira, G R; Rodrigues, C L; Leal, P R L; Santos, A A; Rola, F H

    2004-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) leads to profound haemodynamic changes. Constant outflows from the central autonomic pattern generators modulate the activity of the spinal sympathetic neurons. Sudden loss of communication between these centers and the sympathetic neurons in the intermediolateral thoracic and lumbar spinal cord leads to spinal shock. After high SCI, experimental data demonstrated a brief hypertensive peak followed by bradycardia with escape arrhythmias and marked hypotension. Total peripheral resistance and cardiac output decrease, while central venous pressure remains unchanged. The initial hypertensive peak is thought to result from direct sympathetic stimulation during SCI and its presence is anaesthetic agent dependent. Hypotension improves within days in most animal species because of reasons not totally understood, which may include synaptic reorganization or hyper responsiveness of alpha receptors. No convincing data has demonstrated that the deafferented spinal cord can generate significant basal sympathetic activity. However, with the spinal shock resolution, the deafferented spinal cord (in lesions above T6) will generate life-threatening hypertensive bouts with compensatory bradycardia, known as autonomic hyperreflexia (AH) after stimuli such as pain or bladder/colonic distension. AH results from the lack of supraspinal control of the sympathetic neurons and altered neurotransmission (e.g. glutamatergic) within the spinal cord. Despite significant progress in recent years, further research is necessary to fully understand the spectrum of haemodynamic changes after SCI.

  6. VOLUNTARY EXERCISE INCREASES OLIGODENDROGENESIS IN SPINAL CORD

    PubMed Central

    Krityakiarana, W.; Espinosa-Jeffrey, A.; Ghiani, C.A.; Zhao, P. M.; Gomez-Pinilla, F.; Yamaguchi, M.; Kotchabhakdi, N.; de Vellis, J.

    2009-01-01

    Exercise has been shown to increase hippocampal neurogenesis, but the effects of exercise on oligodendrocyte generation have not yet been reported. In this study, we evaluated the hypothesis that voluntary exercise may affect neurogenesis, and more in particular, oligodendrogenesis, in the thoracic segment of the intact spinal cord of adult nestin-GFP transgenic mice. Voluntary exercise for 7 and 14 days increased nestin-GFP expression around the ependymal area. In addition, voluntary exercise for 7 days significantly increased nestin-GFP expression in both the white and gray matter of the thoracic segment of the intact spinal cord, whereas, 14 days-exercise decreased nestin-GFP expression. Markers for immature oligodendrocytes (Transferrin and CNPase) were significantly increased after 7 days of voluntary exercise. These results suggest that voluntary exercise positively influences oligodendrogenesis in the intact spinal cord, emphasizing the beneficial effect of voluntary exercise as a possible co-treatment for spinal cord injury. PMID:20374076

  7. Spinal Cord Injury Model System Information Network

    MedlinePlus

    ... for Women with SCI Video Series EatRight® Weight Management Program Smoking's Effects on ... of Alabama at Birmingham Spinal Cord Injury Model System (UAB-SCIMS) maintains this Information Network as a ...

  8. Ganglioside patterns in human spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Vorwerk, C K

    2001-12-01

    To examine the distribution of gangliosides in human cervical and lumbar spinal cord. Magdeburg, Germany. The ganglioside distribution of human cervical and lumbar spinal cord enlargements from 10 neurological normal patients was analyzed. Gangliosides were isolated from different areas corresponding to the columna anterior, columna lateralis and columna posterior. Ganglioside GfD1b/GD1b and GD3 were the most abundant gangliosides in all examined tissues. The total concentration of sialic acid bound gangliosides GM2 and GM3 was less than 5%. The GD3 fraction constantly consisted of a double band as assessed by TLC after lipid extraction. There were significant differences in the ganglioside distribution when comparing tissue from the columna anterior, columna lateralis and columna posterior of the lumbar enlargement of the spinal cord. Differences in the ganglioside composition in human spinal cord regions may reflect the different function of those molecules in the two regions investigated.

  9. Cell transplantation therapy for spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Assinck, Peggy; Duncan, Greg J; Hilton, Brett J; Plemel, Jason R; Tetzlaff, Wolfram

    2017-04-25

    Spinal cord injury can lead to severe motor, sensory and autonomic dysfunction. Currently, there is no effective treatment for the injured spinal cord. The transplantation of Schwann cells, neural stem cells or progenitor cells, olfactory ensheathing cells, oligodendrocyte precursor cells and mesenchymal stem cells has been investigated as potential therapies for spinal cord injury. However, little is known about the mechanisms through which these individual cell types promote repair and functional improvements. The five most commonly proposed mechanisms include neuroprotection, immunomodulation, axon regeneration, neuronal relay formation and myelin regeneration. A better understanding of the mechanisms whereby these cells promote functional improvements, as well as an appreciation of the obstacles in implementing these therapies and effectively modeling spinal cord injury, will be important to make cell transplantation a viable clinical option and may lead to the development of more targeted therapies.

  10. Robot-Applied Resistance Augments the Effects of Body Weight-Supported Treadmill Training on Stepping and Synaptic Plasticity in a Rodent Model of Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Hinahon, Erika; Estrada, Christina; Tong, Lin; Won, Deborah S; de Leon, Ray D

    2017-08-01

    The application of resistive forces has been used during body weight-supported treadmill training (BWSTT) to improve walking function after spinal cord injury (SCI). Whether this form of training actually augments the effects of BWSTT is not yet known. To determine if robotic-applied resistance augments the effects of BWSTT using a controlled experimental design in a rodent model of SCI. Spinally contused rats were treadmill trained using robotic resistance against horizontal (n = 9) or vertical (n = 8) hind limb movements. Hind limb stepping was tested before and after 6 weeks of training. Two control groups, one receiving standard training (ie, without resistance; n = 9) and one untrained (n = 8), were also tested. At the terminal experiment, the spinal cords were prepared for immunohistochemical analysis of synaptophysin. Six weeks of training with horizontal resistance increased step length, whereas training with vertical resistance enhanced step height and movement velocity. None of these changes occurred in the group that received standard (ie, no resistance) training or in the untrained group. Only standard training increased the number of step cycles and shortened cycle period toward normal values. Synaptophysin expression in the ventral horn was highest in rats trained with horizontal resistance and in untrained rats and was positively correlated with step length. Adding robotic-applied resistance to BWSTT produced gains in locomotor function over BWSTT alone. The impact of resistive forces on spinal connections may depend on the nature of the resistive forces and the synaptic milieu that is present after SCI.

  11. Neuropraxia of the cervical spinal cord following cervical spinal cord trauma: a report of five patients.

    PubMed

    Bernsen, H J; Koetsveld, A; Frenken, C W; van Norel, G J

    2000-06-01

    Neuropraxia of the cervical spinal cord is a rare condition which is almost exclusively reported in American football players following cervical hyperextension or hyperflexion trauma. In this entity-neurological symptoms of both arms and legs for a period of up to 15 minutes are observed with complete recovery. We report the characteristics of five patients not involved in contact sport activities with a neuropraxia of the spinal cord following cervical trauma. In four of the five patients, this syndrome was associated with a cervical canal stenosis. Surgical decompression was performed in two patients with progressive neurological symptoms after an initial period of recovery. The cases illustrates that although neuropraxia of the spinal cord is usually seen in athletes, also other persons may be at risk for developing this condition, especially when a preexisting spinal stenosis is present. Patients who experienced neuropraxia of the spinal cord should thus be evaluated carefully for the presence of cervical spinal cord abnormalities.

  12. Repair, reconstruction, regeneration and rehabilitation strategies to spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Turbes, C C

    1997-01-01

    The structural changes seen in the transected spinal cord followed by transplantation of the distal ends (neuroma) of intercostal nerve inserted into the spinal cord proximal and distal to the transection lesion site. This activates CNS axonal regeneration. 2,3,4 These changes refer to the plasticity in the nervous system following damage to the spinal cord. There is regeneration and growth and synapotogenesis and remodeling of synaptic connections, development of reflex activity in the denervated cord. Nerve growth factors and neurotrophic factors sustain and maintain a degree of functional integrity of structural neural circuitry. 2,3,4,13 The end result is standing, stepping, and reflex walking in 28 female mature dogs. 2,3,4,5 Electrical stimulation of the anastomosed intercostal nerves resulted in hind limb movements and recording of the electromyograms of the contracting muscles. Twenty-six control dogs and animals with behavioral depression are unable to follow rehabilitative procedures developed muscle atrophy, ankylosis of joints, decrease in bone density, decrease in reflex activity of the spinal cord distal to the transection. 2,3,4,5

  13. Retinoic acid signaling in spinal cord development.

    PubMed

    Lara-Ramírez, Ricardo; Zieger, Elisabeth; Schubert, Michael

    2013-07-01

    Retinoic acid (RA) is an important signaling molecule mediating intercellular communication through vertebrate development. Here, we present and discuss recent information on the roles of the RA signaling pathway in spinal cord development. RA is an important player in the patterning and definition of the spinal cord territory from very early stages of development, even before the appearance of the neural plate and further serves a role in the patterning of the spinal cord both along the dorsoventral and anteroposterior axes, particularly in the promotion of neuronal differentiation. It is thus required to establish a variety of neuronal cell types at specific positions of the spinal cord. The main goal of this review is to gather information from vertebrate models, including fish, frogs, chicken and mice, and to put this information in a comparative context in an effort to visualize how the RA pathway was incorporated into the evolving vertebrate spinal cord and to identify mechanisms that are both common and different in the various vertebrate models. In doing so, we try to reconstruct how spinal cord development has been regulated by the RA signaling cascade through vertebrate diversification, highlighting areas which require further studies to obtain a better understanding of the evolutionary events that shaped this structure in the vertebrate lineage. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Reflex conditioning: A new strategy for improving motor function after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiang Yang; Chen, Yi; Wang, Yu; Thompson, Aiko; Carp, Jonathan S.; Segal, Richard L.; Wolpaw, Jonathan R.

    2010-01-01

    Spinal reflex conditioning changes reflex size, induces spinal cord plasticity, and modifies locomotion. Appropriate reflex conditioning can improve walking in rats after spinal cord injury (SCI). Reflex conditioning offers a new therapeutic strategy for restoring function in people with SCI. This approach can address the specific deficits of individuals with SCI by targeting specific reflex pathways for increased or decreased responsiveness. In addition, once clinically significant regeneration can be achieved, reflex conditioning could provide a means of re-educating the newly (and probably imperfectly) reconnected spinal cord. PMID:20590534

  15. Spinal cord thermosensitivity: An afferent phenomenon?

    PubMed Central

    Brock, James A.; McAllen, Robin M.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT We review the evidence for thermoregulatory temperature sensors in the mammalian spinal cord and reach the following conclusions. 1) Spinal cord temperature contributes physiologically to temperature regulation. 2) Parallel anterolateral ascending pathways transmit signals from spinal cooling and spinal warming: they overlap with the respective axon pathways of the dorsal horn neurons that are driven by peripheral cold- and warm-sensitive afferents. 3) We hypothesize that these ‘cold’ and ‘warm’ ascending pathways transmit all extracranial thermosensory information to the brain. 4) Cutaneous cold afferents can be activated not only by cooling the skin but also by cooling sites along their axons: we consider that this is functionally insignificant in vivo. 5) By a presynaptic action on their central terminals, local spinal cooling enhances neurotransmission from incoming ‘cold’ afferent action potentials to second order neurons in the dorsal horn; this effect disappears when the spinal cord is warm. 6) Spinal warm sensitivity is due to warm-sensitive miniature vesicular transmitter release from afferent terminals in the dorsal horn: this effect is powerful enough to excite second order neurons in the ‘warm’ pathway independently of any incoming sensory traffic. 7) Distinct but related presynaptic mechanisms at cold- and warm-sensitive afferent terminals can thus account for the thermoregulatory actions of spinal cord temperature. PMID:27857953

  16. Silencing spinal interneurons inhibits immune suppressive autonomic reflexes caused by spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Ueno, Masaki; Ueno-Nakamura, Yuka; Niehaus, Jesse; Popovich, Phillip G.; Yoshida, Yutaka

    2016-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) at high spinal levels (e.g., above thoracic level 5) causes systemic immune suppression; however, the underlying mechanisms are unknown. Here, we show that profound plasticity develops within spinal autonomic circuitry below the injury, creating a sympathetic anti-inflammatory reflex, and that chemogenetic silencing of this reflex circuitry blocks post-SCI immune suppression. These data provide new insights and potential therapeutic options for limiting the devastating consequences of post-traumatic autonomic hyperreflexia and post-injury immune suppression. PMID:27089020

  17. Spinal cord stimulation: uses and applications.

    PubMed

    Golovac, Stanley

    2010-05-01

    Spinal cord stimulation has been used successfully for more than 40 years. The application of an electrical impulse field on to the spinal cord is used with a battery generator source and a variety of either cylindrical or paddle/plate leads. Energy is delivered from either a conventional internal programmable generator or a rechargeable style battery. Many clinical conditions such as complex regional pain syndrome, failed back spinal syndrome, and extremity neuropathic pain involving the trunk and limbs are approved for its use. This device allows patients to live a successful life without pain.

  18. Diagnosis and management of spinal cord emergencies.

    PubMed

    Flanagan, E P; Pittock, S J

    2017-01-01

    Most spinal cord injury is seen with trauma. Nontraumatic spinal cord emergencies are discussed in this chapter. These myelopathies are rare but potentially devastating neurologic disorders. In some situations prior comorbidity (e.g., advanced cancer) provides a clue, but in others (e.g., autoimmune myelopathies) it may come with little warning. Neurologic examination helps distinguish spinal cord emergencies from peripheral nervous system emergencies (e.g., Guillain-Barré), although some features overlap. Neurologic deficits are often severe and may quickly become irreversible, highlighting the importance of early diagnosis and treatment. Emergent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the entire spine is the imaging modality of choice for nontraumatic spinal cord emergencies and helps differentiate extramedullary compressive causes (e.g., epidural abscess, metastatic compression, epidural hematoma) from intramedullary etiologies (e.g., transverse myelitis, infectious myelitis, or spinal cord infarct). The MRI characteristics may give a clue to the diagnosis (e.g., flow voids dorsal to the cord in dural arteriovenous fistula). However, additional investigations (e.g., aquaporin-4-IgG) are often necessary to diagnose intramedullary etiologies and guide treatment. Emergency decompressive surgery is necessary for many extramedullary compressive causes, either alone or in combination with other treatments (e.g., radiation) and preoperative neurologic deficit is the best predictor of outcome.

  19. International spinal cord injury spinal column injury basic data set.

    PubMed

    Dvorak, M F; Wing, P C; Fehlings, M G; Vaccaro, A R; Itshayek, E; Biering-Sorensen, F; Noonan, V K

    2012-11-01

    Survey of expert opinion, feedback and final consensus. To describe the development of the International Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Spinal Column Injury Basic Data Set. International working group. A committee of experts was established to select and define data elements. The data set was then disseminated to the appropriate committees and organizations for comment. All suggested revisions were considered and the final version was endorsed by both the International Spinal Cord Society (ISCoS) and the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA). The data set consists of seven variables: (1) penetrating or blunt injury, (2) spinal column injury(ies), (3) single or multiple level spinal column injury(ies), (4) spinal column injury level number, (5) spinal column injury level, (6) disc and/or posterior ligamentous complex injury and (7) traumatic translation. All variables are coded using numbers or characters. For variables 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7, response categories are assigned a numeric point score. Variable 5 assigns both characters and numbers to identify level(s) of spinal injured vertebra(e). When there are several distinct and separate levels of injury, then each one is described using variables 4 through 7. The International SCI Spinal Column Injury Basic Data Set was developed to facilitate comparisons of spinal column injury data among studies, centres and countries. This data set is part of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Common Data Element project, and tools are now available to assist investigators in collecting this data in their SCI clinical studies.

  20. Imaging of Spinal Cord Injury: Acute Cervical Spinal Cord Injury, Cervical Spondylotic Myelopathy, and Cord Herniation.

    PubMed

    Talekar, Kiran; Poplawski, Michael; Hegde, Rahul; Cox, Mougnyan; Flanders, Adam

    2016-10-01

    We review the pathophysiology and imaging findings of acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI), cervical spondylotic myelopathy, and briefly review the much less common cord herniation as a unique cause of myelopathy. Acute traumatic SCI is devastating to the patient and the costs to society are staggering. There are currently no "cures" for SCI and the only accepted pharmacologic treatment regimen for traumatic SCI is currently being questioned. Evaluation and prognostication of SCI is a demanding area with significant deficiencies, including lack of biomarkers. Accurate classification of SCI is heavily dependent on a good clinical examination, the results of which can vary substantially based upon the patient׳s condition or comorbidities and the skills of the examiner. Moreover, the full extent of a patients׳ neurologic injury may not become apparent for days after injury; by then, therapeutic response may be limited. Although magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the best imaging modality for the evaluation of spinal cord parenchyma, conventional MR techniques do not appear to differentiate edema from axonal injury. Recently, it is proposed that in addition to characterizing the anatomic extent of injury, metrics derived from conventional MRI and diffusion tensor imaging, in conjunction with the neurological examination, can serve as a reliable objective biomarker for determination of the extent of neurologic injury and early identification of patients who would benefit from treatment. Cervical spondylosis is a common disorder affecting predominantly the elderly with a potential to narrow the spinal canal and thereby impinge or compress upon the neural elements leading to cervical spondylotic myelopathy and radiculopathy. It is the commonest nontraumatic cause of spinal cord disorder in adults. Imaging plays an important role in grading the severity of spondylosis and detecting cord abnormalities suggesting myelopathy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights

  1. Managing chronic pain with spinal cord stimulation.

    PubMed

    Epstein, Lawrence J; Palmieri, Marco

    2012-01-01

    Since its introduction as a procedure of last resort in a terminally ill patient with intractable cancer-related pain, spinal cord stimulation has been used to effectively treat chronic pain of varied origins. Spinal cord stimulation is commonly used for control of pain secondary to failed back surgery syndrome and complex regional pain syndrome, as well as pain from angina pectoris, peripheral vascular disease, and other causes. By stimulating one or more electrodes implanted in the posterior epidural space, the patient feels paresthesias in their areas of pain, which reduces the level of pain. Pain is reduced without the side effects associated with analgesic medications. Patients have improved quality of life and improved function, with many returning to work. Spinal cord stimulation has been shown to be cost effective as compared with conservative management alone. There is strong evidence for efficacy and cost effectiveness of spinal cord stimulation in the treatment of pain associated with intractable angina, failed back surgery syndrome, and complex regional pain syndrome. In this article, we review the history and pathophysiology of spinal cord stimulation, and the evidence (or lack thereof) for efficacy in common clinical practice.

  2. Transcranial magnetic stimulation after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Awad, Basem I; Carmody, Margaret A; Zhang, Xiaoming; Lin, Vernon W; Steinmetz, Michael P

    2015-02-01

    To review the basic principles and techniques of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and provide information and evidence regarding its applications in spinal cord injury clinical rehabilitation. A review of the available current and historical literature regarding TMS was conducted, and a discussion of its potential use in spinal cord injury rehabilitation is presented. TMS provides reliable information about the functional integrity and conduction properties of the corticospinal tracts and motor control in the diagnostic and prognostic assessment of various neurological disorders. It allows one to follow the evolution of motor control and to evaluate the effects of different therapeutic procedures. Motor-evoked potentials can be useful in follow-up evaluation of motor function during treatment and rehabilitation, specifically in patients with spinal cord injury and stroke. Although studies regarding somatomotor functional recovery after spinal cord injury have shown promise, more trials are required to provide strong and substantial evidence. TMS is a promising noninvasive tool for the treatment of spasticity, neuropathic pain, and somatomotor deficit after spinal cord injury. Further investigation is needed to demonstrate whether different protocols and applications of stimulation, as well as alternative cortical sites of stimulation, may induce more pronounced and beneficial clinical effects. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Radiation tolerance of the cervical spinal cord

    SciTech Connect

    McCunniff, A.J.; Liang, M.J.

    1989-03-01

    The incidence of permanent injury to the spinal cord as a complication of radiation therapy generally correlates positively with total radiation dosage. However, several reports in the literature have indicated that fraction size is also an important factor in the development or nondevelopment of late injuries in normal tissue. To determine the effect of fraction size on the incidence of radiation-induced spinal cord injuries, we reviewed 144 cases of head and neck cancer treated at our institution between 1971 and 1980 with radiation greater than 5600 cGy to a portion of the cervical spinal cord. Most of these patients received greater than or equal to 6000 cGy, with fraction sizes ranging from 133 cGy to 200 cGy. Fifty-three of the 144 patients have been followed up for 2 years or more. Nearly half of these (26 patients) received greater than 6000 cGy with fraction sizes of 133 cGy to 180 cGy. Only 1 of the 53 (1.9%) has sustained permanent spinal cord injury; 20 months after completion of radiation treatments he developed Brown-Sequard syndrome. Our experience suggests that radiation injuries to the spinal cord correlate not only with total radiation dosage, but also with fraction size; low fraction sizes appear to decrease the incidence of such injuries.

  4. Vocational Rehabilitation of Persons with Spinal Cord Injuries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poor, Charles R.

    1975-01-01

    Reviews historical development of organized vocational rehabilitation programming for the spinal cord injured in the United States. Significant factors that affect vocational rehabilitation outcomes with spinal cord injured persons are listed and discussed. (Author)

  5. How Are Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Children Diagnosed?

    MedlinePlus

    ... Children Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging How Are Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors Diagnosed in Children? Brain ... resonance angiography (MRA) or computerized tomographic angiography (CTA). Brain or spinal cord tumor biopsy Imaging tests such ...

  6. Characteristics and rehabilitation for patients with spinal cord stab injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fangyong; Zhang, Junwei; Tang, Hehu; Li, Xiang; Jiang, Shudong; Lv, Zhen; Liu, Shujia; Chen, Shizheng; Liu, Jiesheng; Hong, Yi

    2015-12-01

    [Purpose] The objective of the study was to compare the incidence, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of patients with spinal cord stab injury to those with the more common spinal cord contusion injury. [Subjects] Of patients hospitalized in China Rehabilitation Research Center from 1994 to 2014, 40 of those having a spinal cord stab injury and 50 with spinal cord contusion were selected. [Methods] The data of all patients were analyzed retrospectively. The cases were evaluated by collecting admission and discharge ASIA (American Spinal Injury Association) and ADL (activity of daily living) scores. [Results] After a comprehensive rehabilitation program, ASIA and ADL scores of patients having both spinal cord stab injury and spinal cord contusion significantly increase. However, the increases were noted to be higher in patients having a spinal cord stab injury than those having spinal cord contusion. [Conclusion] Comprehensive rehabilitation is effective both for patients having spinal cord stab injury and those with spinal cord contusion injury. However, the prognosis of patients having spinal cord stab injury is better than that of patients with spinal cord contusion.

  7. Characteristics and rehabilitation for patients with spinal cord stab injury

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Fangyong; Zhang, Junwei; Tang, Hehu; Li, Xiang; Jiang, Shudong; Lv, Zhen; Liu, Shujia; Chen, Shizheng; Liu, Jiesheng; Hong, Yi

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] The objective of the study was to compare the incidence, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of patients with spinal cord stab injury to those with the more common spinal cord contusion injury. [Subjects] Of patients hospitalized in China Rehabilitation Research Center from 1994 to 2014, 40 of those having a spinal cord stab injury and 50 with spinal cord contusion were selected. [Methods] The data of all patients were analyzed retrospectively. The cases were evaluated by collecting admission and discharge ASIA (American Spinal Injury Association) and ADL (activity of daily living) scores. [Results] After a comprehensive rehabilitation program, ASIA and ADL scores of patients having both spinal cord stab injury and spinal cord contusion significantly increase. However, the increases were noted to be higher in patients having a spinal cord stab injury than those having spinal cord contusion. [Conclusion] Comprehensive rehabilitation is effective both for patients having spinal cord stab injury and those with spinal cord contusion injury. However, the prognosis of patients having spinal cord stab injury is better than that of patients with spinal cord contusion. PMID:26834329

  8. Spinal cord infarction: a rare cause of paraplegia.

    PubMed

    Patel, Sonali; Naidoo, Khimara; Thomas, Peter

    2014-06-25

    Spinal cord infarction is rare and represents a diagnostic challenge for many physicians. There are few reported cases worldwide with a prevalence of 1.2% of all strokes. Circulation to the spinal cord is supplied by a rich anastomosis. The anterior spinal artery supplies the anterior two thirds of the spinal cord and infarction to this area is marked by paralysis, spinothalamic sensory deficit and loss of sphincter control depending on where the lesion is. Treatment of spinal cord infarction focuses on rehabilitation with diverse outcomes. This report presents a case of acute spinal cord infarction with acquisition of MRI to aid diagnosis.

  9. Causes of Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background: Knowledge of the causes of spinal cord injury (SCI) and associated factors is critical in the development of successful prevention programs. Objective: This study analyzed data from the National SCI Database (NSCID) and National Shriners SCI Database (NSSCID) in the United States to examine specific etiologies of SCI by age, sex, race, ethnicity, day and month of injury, and neurologic outcomes. Methods: NSCID and NSSCID participants who had a traumatic SCI from 2005 to 2011 with known etiology were included in the analyses (N=7,834). Thirty-seven causes of injury documented in the databases were stratified by personal characteristics using descriptive analysis. Results: The most common causes of SCI were automobile crashes (31.5%) and falls (25.3%), followed by gunshot wounds (10.4%), motorcycle crashes (6.8%), diving incidents (4.7%), and medical/surgical complications (4.3%), which collectively accounted for 83.1% of total SCIs since 2005. Automobile crashes were the leading cause of SCI until age 45 years, whereas falls were the leading cause after age 45 years. Gunshot wounds, motorcycle crashes, and diving caused more SCIs in males than females. The major difference among race/ethnicity was in the proportion of gunshot wounds. More SCIs occurred during the weekends and warmer months, which seemed to parallel the increase of motorcycle- and diving-related SCIs. Level and completeness of injury are also associated with etiology of injury. Conclusions: The present findings suggest that prevention strategies should be tailored to the targeted population and major causes to have a meaningful impact on reducing the incidence of SCI. PMID:23678280

  10. Surgical Neurostimulation for Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Chari, Aswin; Hentall, Ian D.; Papadopoulos, Marios C.; Pereira, Erlick A. C.

    2017-01-01

    Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating neurological condition characterized by a constellation of symptoms including paralysis, paraesthesia, pain, cardiovascular, bladder, bowel and sexual dysfunction. Current treatment for SCI involves acute resuscitation, aggressive rehabilitation and symptomatic treatment for complications. Despite the progress in scientific understanding, regenerative therapies are lacking. In this review, we outline the current state and future potential of invasive and non-invasive neuromodulation strategies including deep brain stimulation (DBS), spinal cord stimulation (SCS), motor cortex stimulation (MCS), transcutaneous direct current stimulation (tDCS) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the context of SCI. We consider the ability of these therapies to address pain, sensorimotor symptoms and autonomic dysregulation associated with SCI. In addition to the potential to make important contributions to SCI treatment, neuromodulation has the added ability to contribute to our understanding of spinal cord neurobiology and the pathophysiology of SCI. PMID:28208601

  11. Intractable Pruritus After Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Crane, Deborah A; Jaffee, Kenneth M; Kundu, Anjana

    2009-01-01

    Background: This report describes a young woman with incomplete traumatic cervical spinal cord injury and intractable pruritus involving her dorsal forearm. Method: Case report. Findings: Anatomic distribution of the pruritus corresponded to the dermatomal distribution of her level of spinal cord injury and vertebral fusion. Symptoms were attributed to the spinal cord injury and possible cervical root injury. Pruritus was refractory to all treatments, including topical lidocaine, gabapentin, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, intravenous Bier block, stellate ganglion block, and acupuncture. Conclusions: Further understanding of neuropathic pruritus is needed. Diagnostic workup of intractable pruritus should include advanced imaging to detect ongoing nerve root compression. If diagnostic studies suggest radiculopathy, epidural steroid injection should be considered. Because the autonomic nervous system may be involved in complex chronic pain or pruritic syndromes, sympatholysis via such techniques as stellate ganglion block might be effective. PMID:19777867

  12. Intractable pruritus after traumatic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Crane, Deborah A; Jaffee, Kenneth M; Kundu, Anjana

    2009-01-01

    This report describes a young woman with incomplete traumatic cervical spinal cord injury and intractable pruritus involving her dorsal forearm. Case report. Anatomic distribution of the pruritus corresponded to the dermatomal distribution of her level of spinal cord injury and vertebral fusion. Symptoms were attributed to the spinal cord injury and possible cervical root injury. Pruritus was refractory to all treatments, including topical lidocaine, gabapentin, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, intravenous Bier block, stellate ganglion block, and acupuncture. Further understanding of neuropathic pruritus is needed. Diagnostic workup of intractable pruritus should include advanced imaging to detect ongoing nerve root compression. If diagnostic studies suggest radiculopathy, epidural steroid injection should be considered. Because the autonomic nervous system may be involved in complex chronic pain or pruritic syndromes, sympatholysis via such techniques as stellate ganglion block might be effective.

  13. Vascular anatomy of the spinal cord

    SciTech Connect

    Thron, A.K.

    1988-01-01

    The book summarizes the anatomic guidelines of external blood supply to the spinal cord. The basic principles of arterial supply and venous drainage are illustrated by explicit schemes for quick orientation. In the first part of the book, systematic radiologic-anatomic investigations of the superficial and deep vessels of all segments of the spinal cord are introduced. The microvascular morphology is portrayed by numerous microradiographic sections in all three dimensions without overshadowing. The three-dimensional representation of the vascular architecture illustrates elementary outlines and details of arterial territories, anastomotic cross-linking as well as the capillary system, particularly the hitherto unknown structure of the medullary venous system with its functionally important anastomoses and varying regional structures. These often now radiologic-anatomic findings are discussed as to their functional and pathophysiologic impact and constitute the basic on which to improve one's understanding of vascular syndromes of the spinal cord.

  14. The role of rehabilitation and methodological problems in spinal cord repair therapies.

    PubMed

    Tederko, Piotr; Krasuski, Marek; Kiwerski, Jerzy; Nyka, Izabela; Białoszewski, Dariusz

    2009-01-01

    Despite the rapid development of studies of spinal cord repair therapies (SCRT), there is still a dearth of reliable reports on their clinical usefulness. Basing on a review of current literature, this article emphasises the role and special character of comprehensive rehabilitation based on the modulation of central nervous system plasticity in the treatment of spinal cord injuries with the use of SCRT. Basing on guidelines by the International Campaign for Cures of Spinal Cord Injury Paralysis (ICCP), this article also discusses ethical and methodological issues of SCRT studies. Comprehensive motor rehabilitation exerts an effect that potentially modifies spinal cord plasticity and may significantly supplement SCRT, leading to expected functional effects. Encouraging results of animal studies cannot be directly translated into expectations regarding SCRT utility people. Ensuring a high quality of studies on SCRT efficacy and safety necessitates compliance with rigorous methodological requirements. Functional ability of the patient needs to be a significant end-point of SCRT studies.

  15. Muscular, skeletal, and neural adaptations following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Shields, Richard K

    2002-02-01

    Spinal cord injury is associated with adaptations to the muscular, skeletal, and spinal systems. Experimental data are lacking regarding the extent to which rehabilitative methods may influence these adaptations. An understanding of the plasticity of the muscular, skeletal, and spinal systems after paralysis may be important as new rehabilitative technologies emerge in the 21st century. Moreover, individuals injured today may become poor candidates for future scientific advancements (cure) if their neuromusculoskeletal systems are irreversibly impaired. The primary purpose of this paper is to explore the physiological properties of skeletal muscle as a result of spinal cord injury; secondarily, to consider associated changes at the skeletal and spinal levels. Muscular adaptations include a transformation to faster myosin, increased contractile speeds, shift to the right on the torque-frequency curve, increased fatigue, and enhanced doublet potentiation. These muscular adaptations may be prevented in individuals with acute paralysis and partially reversed in individuals with chronic paralysis. Moreover, the muscular changes may be coordinated with motor unit and spinal circuitry adaptations. Concurrently, skeletal adaptations, as measured by bone mineral density, show extensive loss within the first six months after paralysis. The underlying science governing neuromusculoskeletal adaptations after paralysis will help guide professionals as new rehabilitation strategies evolve in the future.

  16. Sexuality Counseling with Clients Who Have Spinal Cord Injuries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farrow, Jeff

    1990-01-01

    Examines effects of spinal cord injury on sexuality. Discusses areas of sexual concern. Provides suggestions for treating clients with spinal cord injuries experiencing sexual difficulties. Concludes that major goal in working with clients with spinal cord injuries who have sexual difficulties should be the facilitation of a creative and…

  17. Turkish Adaptation of Spinal Cord Independence Measure--Version III

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kesiktas, Nur; Paker, Nurdan; Bugdayci, Derya; Sencan, Sureyya; Karan, Ayse; Muslumanoglu, Lutfiye

    2012-01-01

    Various rating scales have been used to assess ability in individuals with spinal cord injury. There is no specific functional assessment scale for Turkish patients with spinal cord injury. The Spinal Cord Independence Measure (SCIM) is a specific test, which has become popular in the last decade. A study was conducted to validate and evaluate the…

  18. Turkish Adaptation of Spinal Cord Independence Measure--Version III

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kesiktas, Nur; Paker, Nurdan; Bugdayci, Derya; Sencan, Sureyya; Karan, Ayse; Muslumanoglu, Lutfiye

    2012-01-01

    Various rating scales have been used to assess ability in individuals with spinal cord injury. There is no specific functional assessment scale for Turkish patients with spinal cord injury. The Spinal Cord Independence Measure (SCIM) is a specific test, which has become popular in the last decade. A study was conducted to validate and evaluate the…

  19. Sexuality Counseling with Clients Who Have Spinal Cord Injuries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farrow, Jeff

    1990-01-01

    Examines effects of spinal cord injury on sexuality. Discusses areas of sexual concern. Provides suggestions for treating clients with spinal cord injuries experiencing sexual difficulties. Concludes that major goal in working with clients with spinal cord injuries who have sexual difficulties should be the facilitation of a creative and…

  20. Vascular Defects and Spinal Cord Hypoxia in Spinal Muscular Atrophy.

    PubMed

    Somers, Eilidh; Lees, Robert D; Hoban, Katie; Sleigh, James N; Zhou, Haiyan; Muntoni, Francesco; Talbot, Kevin; Gillingwater, Thomas H; Parson, Simon H

    2016-02-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a major inherited cause of infant death worldwide. It results from mutations in a single, ubiquitously expressed gene (SMN1), with loss of lower motor neurons being the primary pathological signature. Systemic defects have also been reported in SMA patients and animal models. We investigated whether defects associated with the vasculature contribute to motor neuron pathology in SMA. Development and integrity of the capillary bed was examined in skeletal muscle and spinal cord of SMA mice, and muscle biopsies from SMA patients and controls, using quantitative morphometric approaches on immunohistochemically labeled tissue. Pimonidazole hydrochloride-based assays were used to identify functional hypoxia. The capillary bed in muscle and spinal cord was normal in presymptomatic SMA mice (postnatal day 1), but failed to match subsequent postnatal development in control littermates. At mid- and late-symptomatic time points, the extent of the vascular architecture observed in two distinct mouse models of SMA was ∼50% of that observed in control animals. Skeletal muscle biopsies from human patients confirmed the presence of developmentally similar, significant vascular depletion in severe SMA. Hypovascularity in SMA mouse spinal cord was accompanied by significant functional hypoxia and defects in the blood-spinal cord barrier. Our results indicate that vascular defects are a major feature of severe forms of SMA, present in both mouse models and patients, resulting in functional hypoxia of motor neurons. Thus, abnormal vascular development and resulting hypoxia may contribute to the pathogenesis of SMA. © 2016 American Neurological Association.

  1. Serotonergic transmission after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Thomschewski, Aljoscha; Höller, Peter; Lochner, Piergiorgio; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2015-02-01

    Changes in descending serotonergic innervation of spinal neural activity have been implicated in symptoms of paralysis, spasticity, sensory disturbances and pain following spinal cord injury (SCI). Serotonergic neurons possess an enhanced ability to regenerate or sprout after many types of injury, including SCI. Current research suggests that serotonine (5-HT) release within the ventral horn of the spinal cord plays a critical role in motor function, and activation of 5-HT receptors mediates locomotor control. 5-HT originating from the brain stem inhibits sensory afferent transmission and associated spinal reflexes; by abolishing 5-HT innervation SCI leads to a disinhibition of sensory transmission. 5-HT denervation supersensitivity is one of the key mechanisms underlying the increased motoneuron excitability that occurs after SCI, and this hyperexcitability has been demonstrated to underlie the pathogenesis of spasticity after SCI. Moreover, emerging evidence implicates serotonergic descending facilitatory pathways from the brainstem to the spinal cord in the maintenance of pathologic pain. There are functional relevant connections between the descending serotonergic system from the rostral ventromedial medulla in the brainstem, the 5-HT receptors in the spinal dorsal horn, and the descending pain facilitation after tissue and nerve injury. This narrative review focussed on the most important studies that have investigated the above-mentioned effects of impaired 5-HT-transmission in humans after SCI. We also briefly discussed the promising therapeutical approaches with serotonergic drugs, monoclonal antibodies and intraspinal cell transplantation.

  2. Spinal Cord Mechanisms of Chronic Pain and Clinical Implications

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Hsinlin Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Chronic pain is a prevalent and challenging problem for most medical practitioners. Due to complex pathological mechanisms involved in chronic pain, optimal treatment is still under development. The spinal cord is an important gateway for peripheral pain signals transmitted to the brain. In chronic pain states, painful stimuli trigger afferent fibers in the dorsal horn to release neuropeptides and neurotransmitters. These events induce multiple inflammatory and neuropathic processes in the spinal cord dorsal horn and trigger modification and plasticity of local neural circuits. As a result, ongoing noxious signals to the brain are amplified and prolonged, a phenomenon known as central sensitization. In this review, the molecular events associated with central sensitization as well as their clinical implications are discussed. PMID:20461476

  3. Molecular Imaging in Stem Cell Therapy for Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Mei; Zhang, Hong

    2014-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a serious disease of the center nervous system (CNS). It is a devastating injury with sudden loss of motor, sensory, and autonomic function distal to the level of trauma and produces great personal and societal costs. Currently, there are no remarkable effective therapies for the treatment of SCI. Compared to traditional treatment methods, stem cell transplantation therapy holds potential for repair and functional plasticity after SCI. However, the mechanism of stem cell therapy for SCI remains largely unknown and obscure partly due to the lack of efficient stem cell trafficking methods. Molecular imaging technology including positron emission tomography (PET), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), optical imaging (i.e., bioluminescence imaging (BLI)) gives the hope to complete the knowledge concerning basic stem cell biology survival, migration, differentiation, and integration in real time when transplanted into damaged spinal cord. In this paper, we mainly review the molecular imaging technology in stem cell therapy for SCI. PMID:24701583

  4. [The use micro-polarization in spinal cord lesions].

    PubMed

    Sheliakin, A M; Preobrazhenskaia, I G; Komantsev, V N; Makarovskiĭ, A N; Bogdanov, O V

    1998-01-01

    Transdermal micropolarization of the spinal cord was made in patients with consequences of the spinal cord injury or tuberculous spondylitis. Changes in clinical and electrophysiologic status were evaluated. It was found that local direct current through dermal electrodes promotes an improvement of both motor and autonomic functions in such patients. This corresponded to a positive dynamics both of the spinal cord state and cardiac activity. Possible mechanisms of influence of the direct current on the spinal cord as well as perspectives of application of micropolarization in spinal cord's damage are outlined.

  5. Employment Outcomes Following Spinal Cord Injury.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engel, S.; Murphy, G. S.; Athanasou, J. A.; Hickey, L.

    1998-01-01

    A study of 83 Australian adults with spinal cord injuries found that at least 56% had worked at some time post-injury and those who were working when surveyed had done so for an average of close to 10 years. Clerical, office, and administrative occupations proved to be the most suitable. (Author/CR)

  6. Strategies for neuroprotection following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Tederko, Piotr; Krasuski, Marek; Kiwerski, Jerzy; Nyka, Izabela; Białoszewski, Dariusz

    2009-01-01

    Progress in neuropathology has made possible the description of local responses of neural tissue in early stages after traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). The recent identification of multiple factors responsible for secondary spinal cord damage and for potential regenerative abilities has not resulted in the development of a standard for neuroprotective therapy in SCI patients. The paper reviews current knowledge concerning the sequence of biochemical events in the injured spinal cord and gives an overview of therapeutic possibilities for preventing the spread of secondary injury. The literature survey has led to the following conclusions: 1. The primary zone of traumatic damage enlarges due to local vascular disturbances, hypoxia, and the resulting inflammation. 2. Inflammation in the region of secondary injury, apart from having a destructive impact, is the source of substances which may induce neural tissue repair. 3. The administration of methylprednisolone and surgical decompression of the spinal cord within several hours after SCI improves functional and neurological outcomes in patients with incomplete neurological deficits. Currently there is no sufficient scientific evidence to support the safety and efficacy of other neuroprotective methods in humans.

  7. Anorgasmia in anterior spinal cord syndrome.

    PubMed

    Berić, A; Light, J K

    1993-05-01

    Three male and two female patients with anorgasmia and dissociated sensory loss due to an anterior spinal cord syndrome are described. Clinical, neurophysiological and quantitative sensory evaluation revealed preservation of the large fibre dorsal column functions from the lumbosacral segments with concomitant severe dysfunction or absence of the small fibre neospinothalamic mediated functions. These findings indicate a role for the spinothalamic system in orgasm.

  8. Spinal cord compression due to vertebral hemangioma.

    PubMed

    Aksu, Gorkem; Fayda, Merdan; Saynak, Mert; Karadeniz, Ahmet

    2008-02-01

    This article presents a case of multiple vertebral hemangiomas in a 58-year-old man with pain in the dorsal region and bilateral progressive foot numbness. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed multiple vertebral hemangiomas. One hemangioma at the T7 level demonstrated epidural extension, causing spinal cord compression. After treatment with radiotherapy, the patient's symptoms improved significantly.

  9. Employment Outcomes Following Spinal Cord Injury.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engel, S.; Murphy, G. S.; Athanasou, J. A.; Hickey, L.

    1998-01-01

    A study of 83 Australian adults with spinal cord injuries found that at least 56% had worked at some time post-injury and those who were working when surveyed had done so for an average of close to 10 years. Clerical, office, and administrative occupations proved to be the most suitable. (Author/CR)

  10. Accommodating Workers with Spinal Cord Injury.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dowler, Denetta; Batiste, Linda; Whidden, Eddie

    1998-01-01

    Examination of over 1,000 calls to the Job Accommodation Network involving workers with spinal cord injury identified the nature of the industry, job, career progression, and accessibility solutions. The number of calls increased dramatically after passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. (SK)

  11. Simplified spinal cord phantom for evaluation of SQUID magnetospinography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adachi, Y.; Oyama, D.; Somchai, N.; Kawabata, S.; Uehara, G.

    2014-05-01

    Spinal cord functional imaging by magnetospinography (MSG) is a noninvasive diagnostic method for spinal cord diseases. However, the accuracy and spatial resolution of lesion localization by MSG have barely been evaluated in detail so far. We developed a simplified spinal cord phantom for MSG evaluation. The spinal cord phantom is composed of a cylindrical vessel filled with saline water, which acts as a model of a neck. A set of modeled vertebrae is arranged in the cylindrical vessel, which has a neural current model made from catheter electrodes. The neural current model emulates the current distribution around the activated site along the axon of the spinal cord nerve. Our MSG system was used to observe the magnetic field from the phantom; a quadrupole-like pattern of the magnetic field distribution, which is a typical distribution pattern for spinal cord magnetic fields, was successfully reproduced by the phantom. Hence, the developed spinal cord phantom can be used to evaluate MSG source analysis methods.

  12. Functional MRI of the thoracic spinal cord during vibration sensation.

    PubMed

    Kornelsen, Jennifer; Smith, Stephen D; McIver, Theresa A; Sboto-Frankenstein, Uta; Latta, Peter; Tomanek, Boguslaw

    2013-04-01

    To demonstrate that it is possible to acquire accurate functional magnetic resonance images from thoracic spinal cord neurons. The lower thoracic spinal dermatomes (T7-T11) on the right side of the body were mechanically stimulated by vibration for 15 participants. Neuronal responses to vibration sensation were measured in the thoracic spinal cord using a HASTE sequence on a 3 Tesla MRI system. Signal increases were observed in the corresponding lower thoracic spinal cord segments ipsilateral to the side of stimulation in the dorsal aspect of the spinal cord. This is the first study to provide proof of principle that functional imaging of the entire thoracic spinal cord is possible, by detecting neuronal activity in the thoracic spinal cord during sensory stimulation using spinal fMRI. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Plasticity beyond peri-infarct cortex: spinal up regulation of structural plasticity, neurotrophins, and inflammatory cytokines during recovery from cortical stroke.

    PubMed

    Sist, Bernice; Fouad, Karim; Winship, Ian R

    2014-02-01

    Stroke induces pathophysiological and adaptive processes in regions proximal and distal to the infarct. Recent studies suggest that plasticity at the level of the spinal cord may contribute to sensorimotor recovery after cortical stroke. Here, we compare the time course of heightened structural plasticity in the spinal cord against the temporal profile of cortical plasticity and spontaneous behavioral recovery. To examine the relation between trophic and inflammatory effectors and spinal structural plasticity, spinal expression of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) was measured. Growth-associated protein 43 (GAP-43), measured at 3, 7, 14, or 28 days after photothrombotic stroke of the forelimb sensorimotor cortex (FL-SMC) to provide an index of periods of heightened structural plasticity, varied as a function of lesion size and time after stroke in the cortical hemispheres and the spinal cord. Notably, GAP-43 levels in the cervical spinal cord were significantly increased after FL-SMC lesion, but the temporal window of elevated structural plasticity was more finite in spinal cord relative to ipsilesional cortical expression (returning to baseline levels by 28 post-stroke). Peak GAP-43 expression in spinal cord occurred during periods of accelerated spontaneous recovery, as measured on the Montoya Staircase reaching task, and returned to baseline as recovery plateaued. Interestingly, spinal GAP-43 levels were significantly correlated with spinal levels of the inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-6 as well as the neurotrophin NT-3, while a transient increase in BDNF levels preceded elevated GAP-43 expression. These data identify a significant but time-limited window of heightened structural plasticity in the spinal cord following stroke that correlates with spontaneous recovery and the spinal expression of inflammatory cytokines and neurotrophic factors.

  14. Metastatic carcinoid tumour with spinal cord compression.

    PubMed

    Scott, Si; Antwi-Yeboah, Y; Bucur, Sd

    2012-07-01

    Carcinoid tumours are rare with an incidence of 5.25/100,000. They predominantly originate in the gastrointestinal tract (50-60%) or bronchopulmonary system (25-30%). Common sites of metastasis are lymph nodes, liver, lungs and bone. Spinal metastasis are rare, but has been reported in patients with symptoms of spinal cord compression including neurological deficits. We report a rare case of carcinoid metastasis with spinal cord compression, in a 63-year-old man, presenting with a one-year history of back pain without any neurological symptoms. The patient underwent a two-level decompressive laminectomy of T10 and T11 as well as piecemeal tumour resection. Post-operatively the patient made a good recovery without complications.

  15. Metastatic carcinoid tumour with spinal cord compression

    PubMed Central

    Scott, SI; Antwi-Yeboah, Y; Bucur, SD

    2012-01-01

    Carcinoid tumours are rare with an incidence of 5.25/100,000. They predominantly originate in the gastrointestinal tract (50-60%) or bronchopulmonary system (25-30%). Common sites of metastasis are lymph nodes, liver, lungs and bone. Spinal metastasis are rare, but has been reported in patients with symptoms of spinal cord compression including neurological deficits. We report a rare case of carcinoid metastasis with spinal cord compression, in a 63-year-old man, presenting with a one-year history of back pain without any neurological symptoms. The patient underwent a two-level decompressive laminectomy of T10 and T11 as well as piecemeal tumour resection. Post-operatively the patient made a good recovery without complications. PMID:24960730

  16. Overview of Spinal Cord Disorders

    MedlinePlus

    ... information from a specific dermatome is carried by sensory nerve fibers to the spinal nerve root of a specific ... the back of the thigh, is carried by sensory nerve fibers to the 2nd sacral vertebra (S2) nerve root. ...

  17. Multiple sclerosis of the spinal cord: Magnetic resonance appearance

    SciTech Connect

    Thielen, K.R.; Miller, G.M.

    1996-05-01

    To determine the MR appearance of spinal cord multiple sclerosis (MS) plaques in patients presenting with myclopathy by using a high-field (1.5 T) imager. We studied 119 patients who underwent high-field (1.5 T) MR studies of the spinal cord for evaluation of myelopathy. All 119 patients were thought to have possible findings of spinal cord MS at the time of the MRI interpretation. Sixty-four plaques were studied in 47 patients with clinically definite MS and adequate quality MRI. Of these patients 68% had a single spinal cord plaque, 19% had two plaques, and 13% had three or more plaques. Sixty-two percent of the plaques occurred in the cervical spinal cord and most frequently involved the posterior (41%) and lateral (25%) aspects of the spinal cord. None of the 64 lesions involved the entire thickness of the spinal cord. The lesion length varied from 2 to 60 mm, with 84% of the lesions <15 mm in length. The spinal cord diameter was unchanged in 84% of plaques, enlarged at the level of the lesion in 14%, and atrophic in 2%. Just over half (55%) of the plaques enhanced with intravenously administered gadolinium. Of the patients who received synchronous head and spinal cord examinations on the same day, 24% had normal findings on the MR study of the head. Follow-up spinal cord studies were available in nine patients. New lesions developed in two patients, while previously described lesions resolved. In three patients only new lesions developed. In four patients no change occurred in the existing number of cord plaques. Spinal cord demyelinating plaques present as well-circumscribed foci of increased T2 signal that asymmetrically involve the spinal cord parenchyma. Knowledge of their usual appearance may prevent unnecessary biopsy. An MR examination of the head may confirm the imaging suggestion of spinal cord demyelinating disease, because up to 76% of patients have abnormal intracranial findings. 15 refs., 7 figs.

  18. The cross-talk between autophagy and endoplasmic reticulum stress in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yulong; Wu, Yanqing; Liu, Yanlong; He, Zili; Zou, Shuang; Wang, Qingqing; Li, Jiawei; Zheng, Zengming; Chen, Jian; Wu, Fenzan; Gong, Fanhua; Zhang, Hongyu; Xu, Huazi; Xiao, Jian

    2017-01-03

    Spinal cord injury induces the disruption of blood-spinal cord barrier and triggers a complex array of tissue responses, including endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and autophagy. However, the roles of ER stress and autophagy in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption have not been discussed in acute spinal cord trauma. In the present study, we respectively detected the roles of ER stress and autophagy in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption after spinal cord injury. Besides, we also detected the cross-talking between autophagy and ER stress both in vivo and in vitro. ER stress inhibitor, 4-phenylbutyric acid, and autophagy inhibitor, chloroquine, were respectively or combinedly administrated in the model of acute spinal cord injury rats. At day 1 after spinal cord injury, blood-spinal cord barrier was disrupted and activation of ER stress and autophagy were involved in the rat model of trauma. Inhibition of ER stress by treating with 4-phenylbutyric acid decreased blood-spinal cord barrier permeability, prevented the loss of tight junction (TJ) proteins and reduced autophagy activation after spinal cord injury. On the contrary, inhibition of autophagy by treating with chloroquine exacerbated blood-spinal cord barrier permeability, promoted the loss of TJ proteins and enhanced ER stress after spinal cord injury. When 4-phenylbutyric acid and chloroquine were combinedly administrated in spinal cord injury rats, chloroquine abolished the blood-spinal cord barrier protective effect of 4-phenylbutyric acid by exacerbating ER stress after spinal cord injury, indicating that the cross-talking between autophagy and ER stress may play a central role on blood-spinal cord barrier integrity in acute spinal cord injury. The present study illustrates that ER stress induced by spinal cord injury plays a detrimental role on blood-spinal cord barrier integrity, on the contrary, autophagy induced by spinal cord injury plays a furthersome role in blood-spinal cord barrier integrity in

  19. The cross-talk between autophagy and endoplasmic reticulum stress in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    He, Zili; Zou, Shuang; Wang, Qingqing; Li, Jiawei; Zheng, Zengming; Chen, Jian; Wu, Fenzan; Gong, Fanhua; Zhang, Hongyu; Xu, Huazi; Xiao, Jian

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury induces the disruption of blood-spinal cord barrier and triggers a complex array of tissue responses, including endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and autophagy. However, the roles of ER stress and autophagy in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption have not been discussed in acute spinal cord trauma. In the present study, we respectively detected the roles of ER stress and autophagy in blood-spinal cord barrier disruption after spinal cord injury. Besides, we also detected the cross-talking between autophagy and ER stress both in vivo and in vitro. ER stress inhibitor, 4-phenylbutyric acid, and autophagy inhibitor, chloroquine, were respectively or combinedly administrated in the model of acute spinal cord injury rats. At day 1 after spinal cord injury, blood-spinal cord barrier was disrupted and activation of ER stress and autophagy were involved in the rat model of trauma. Inhibition of ER stress by treating with 4-phenylbutyric acid decreased blood-spinal cord barrier permeability, prevented the loss of tight junction (TJ) proteins and reduced autophagy activation after spinal cord injury. On the contrary, inhibition of autophagy by treating with chloroquine exacerbated blood-spinal cord barrier permeability, promoted the loss of TJ proteins and enhanced ER stress after spinal cord injury. When 4-phenylbutyric acid and chloroquine were combinedly administrated in spinal cord injury rats, chloroquine abolished the blood-spinal cord barrier protective effect of 4-phenylbutyric acid by exacerbating ER stress after spinal cord injury, indicating that the cross-talking between autophagy and ER stress may play a central role on blood-spinal cord barrier integrity in acute spinal cord injury. The present study illustrates that ER stress induced by spinal cord injury plays a detrimental role on blood-spinal cord barrier integrity, on the contrary, autophagy induced by spinal cord injury plays a furthersome role in blood-spinal cord barrier integrity in

  20. Spinal cord grey matter segmentation challenge.

    PubMed

    Prados, Ferran; Ashburner, John; Blaiotta, Claudia; Brosch, Tom; Carballido-Gamio, Julio; Cardoso, Manuel Jorge; Conrad, Benjamin N; Datta, Esha; Dávid, Gergely; Leener, Benjamin De; Dupont, Sara M; Freund, Patrick; Wheeler-Kingshott, Claudia A M Gandini; Grussu, Francesco; Henry, Roland; Landman, Bennett A; Ljungberg, Emil; Lyttle, Bailey; Ourselin, Sebastien; Papinutto, Nico; Saporito, Salvatore; Schlaeger, Regina; Smith, Seth A; Summers, Paul; Tam, Roger; Yiannakas, Marios C; Zhu, Alyssa; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2017-03-07

    An important image processing step in spinal cord magnetic resonance imaging is the ability to reliably and accurately segment grey and white matter for tissue specific analysis. There are several semi- or fully-automated segmentation methods for cervical cord cross-sectional area measurement with an excellent performance close or equal to the manual segmentation. However, grey matter segmentation is still challenging due to small cross-sectional size and shape, and active research is being conducted by several groups around the world in this field. Therefore a grey matter spinal cord segmentation challenge was organised to test different capabilities of various methods using the same multi-centre and multi-vendor dataset acquired with distinct 3D gradient-echo sequences. This challenge aimed to characterize the state-of-the-art in the field as well as identifying new opportunities for future improvements. Six different spinal cord grey matter segmentation methods developed independently by various research groups across the world and their performance were compared to manual segmentation outcomes, the present gold-standard. All algorithms provided good overall results for detecting the grey matter butterfly, albeit with variable performance in certain quality-of-segmentation metrics. The data have been made publicly available and the challenge web site remains open to new submissions. No modifications were introduced to any of the presented methods as a result of this challenge for the purposes of this publication.

  1. Effect of cervical spinal cord hemisection on the expression of axon growth markers.

    PubMed

    Vinit, Stéphane; Darlot, Fannie; Stamegna, Jean-Claude; Gauthier, Patrick; Kastner, Anne

    2009-10-25

    To evaluate the plasticity processes occurring in the spared and injured tissue after partial spinal cord injury, we have compared the level of axon growth markers after a C2 cervical hemisection in rats between the contralateral (spared) and ipsilateral (injured) cervical cord using western blotting and immunohistochemical techniques. In the ipsilateral spinal cord 7 days after injury, although GAP-43 levels were increased in the ventral horn caudal to the injury, they were globally decreased in the whole structure (C1-C6). By contrast, in the contralateral intact side 7 days and 1 month after injury, we have found an increase of GAP-43 and betaIII tubulin levels, suggesting that processes of axonal sprouting may occur in the spinal region contralateral to the injury. This increase of GAP-43 in the contralateral spinal cord after cervical hemisection may account, at least partially, to the spontaneous ipsilateral recovery observed after a cervical hemisection.

  2. Update on traumatic acute spinal cord injury. Part 2.

    PubMed

    Mourelo Fariña, M; Salvador de la Barrera, S; Montoto Marqués, A; Ferreiro Velasco, M E; Galeiras Vázquez, R

    2017-02-01

    The aim of treatment in acute traumatic spinal cord injury is to preserve residual neurologic function, avoid secondary injury, and restore spinal alignment and stability. In this second part of the review, we describe the management of spinal cord injury focusing on issues related to short-term respiratory management, where the preservation of diaphragmatic function is a priority, with prediction of the duration of mechanical ventilation and the need for tracheostomy. Surgical assessment of spinal injuries based on updated criteria is discussed, taking into account that although the type of intervention depends on the surgical team, nowadays treatment should afford early spinal decompression and stabilization. Within a comprehensive strategy in spinal cord injury, it is essential to identify and properly treat patient anxiety and pain associated to spinal cord injury, as well as to prevent and ensure the early diagnosis of complications secondary to spinal cord injury (thromboembolic disease, gastrointestinal and urinary disorders, pressure ulcers).

  3. Gene therapy approaches for spinal cord injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bright, Corinne

    As the biomedical engineering field expands, combination technologies are demonstrating enormous potential for treating human disease. In particular, intersections between the rapidly developing fields of gene therapy and tissue engineering hold promise to achieve tissue regeneration. Nonviral gene therapy uses plasmid DNA to deliver therapeutic proteins in vivo for extended periods of time. Tissue engineering employs biomedical materials, such as polymers, to support the regrowth of injured tissue. In this thesis, a combination strategy to deliver genes and drugs in a polymeric scaffold was applied to a spinal cord injury model. In order to develop a platform technology to treat spinal cord injury, several nonviral gene delivery systems and polymeric scaffolds were evaluated in vitro and in vivo. Nonviral vector trafficking was evaluated in primary neuronal culture to develop an understanding of the barriers to gene transfer in neurons and their supporting glia. Although the most efficient gene carrier in vitro differed from the optimal gene carrier in vivo, confocal and electron microscopy of these nonviral vectors provided insights into the interaction of these vectors with the nucleus. A novel pathway for delivering nanoparticles into the nuclei of neurons and Schwann cells via vesicle trafficking was observed in this study. Reporter gene expression levels were evaluated after direct and remote delivery to the spinal cord, and the optimal nonviral vector, dose, and delivery strategy were applied to deliver the gene encoding the basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) to the spinal cord. An injectable and biocompatible gel, composed of the amphiphillic polymer poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(epsilon-caprolactone)-poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG-PCL-PEG) was evaluated as a drug and gene delivery system in vitro, and combined with the optimized nonviral gene delivery system to treat spinal cord injury. Plasmid DNA encoding the bFGF gene and the therapeutic NEP1--40 peptide

  4. Neurocontrol of Movement in Humans With Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Dimitrijevic, Milan R; Danner, Simon M; Mayr, Winfried

    2015-10-01

    In this review of neurocontrol of movement after spinal cord injury, we discuss neurophysiological evidences of conducting and processing mechanisms of the spinal cord. We illustrate that external afferent inputs to the spinal cord below the level of the lesion can modify, initiate, and maintain execution of movement in absence or partial presence of brain motor control after chronic spinal cord injury. We review significant differences between spinal reflex activity elicited by single and repetitive stimulation. The spinal cord can respond with sensitization, habituation, and dis-habituation to regular repetitive stimulation. Therefore, repetitive spinal cord reflex activity can contribute to the functional configuration of the spinal network. Moreover, testing spinal reflex activity in individuals with motor complete spinal cord injury provided evidences for subclinical residual brain influence, suggesting the existence of axons traversing the injury site and influencing the activities below the level of lesion. Thus, there are two motor control models of chronic spinal cord injury in humans: "discomplete" and "reduced and altered volitional motor control." We outline accomplishments in modification and initiation of altered neurocontrol in chronic spinal cord injury people with epidural and functional electrical stimulation. By nonpatterned electrical stimulation of lumbar posterior roots, it is possible to evoke bilateral extension as well as rhythmic motor outputs. Epidural stimulation during treadmill stepping shows increased and/or modified motor activity. Finally, volitional efforts can alter epidurally induced rhythmic activities in incomplete spinal cord injury. Overall, we highlight that upper motor neuron paralysis does not entail complete absence of connectivity between cortex, brain stem, and spinal motor cells, but there can be altered anatomy and corresponding neurophysiological characteristics. With specific input to the spinal cord below the level

  5. Critical care of traumatic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xiaofeng; Kowalski, Robert G; Sciubba, Daniel M; Geocadin, Romergryko G

    2013-01-01

    Approximately 11 000 people suffer traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI) in the United States, each year. TSCI incidences vary from 13.1 to 52.2 per million people and the mortality rates ranged from 3.1 to 17.5 per million people. This review examines the critical care of TSCI. The discussion will focus on primary and secondary mechanisms of injury, spine stabilization and immobilization, surgery, intensive care management, airway and respiratory management, cardiovascular complication management, venous thromboembolism, nutrition and glucose control, infection management, pressure ulcers and early rehabilitation, pharmacologic cord protection, and evolving treatment options including the use of pluripotent stem cells and hypothermia.

  6. Is hydrocephalus after spinal cord injury really caused by the injured spinal cord? Two case reports and a literature review.

    PubMed

    Chrastina, J; Novák, Z; Feitová, V

    Posttraumatic hydrocephalus caused by cerebrospinal fluid circulation disturbances frequently complicates the clinical course and treatment after craniocerebral injury. Hydrocephalus complicating spinal cord injury is only exceptionally reported. The paper presents two cases of complete cervical spinal cord injury with subsequent development of hydrocephalus. The analysis of both cases and literature data confirmed the dominant role of non-spinal factors in the development of hydrocephalus after spinal cord injury. Despite the exceptional occurrence of hydrocephalus after spinal cord injury, this diagnosis should be considered in cases of delayed deterioration of a patient with cervical spinal cord injury, particularly if cerebrospinal fluid space abnormalities and posttraumatic subarachnoid haemorrhage are present. spinal cord injury hydrocephalus subarachnoid hemorrhage Blakes pouch cyst neuroendoscopy.

  7. Hodgkin disease with spinal cord compression.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Vineeta; Srivastava, Arvind; Bhatia, Baldev

    2009-10-01

    Hodgkin disease is a nodal disease. Spinal cord or root compression is a rare complication and usually seen in the setting of progressive, advanced disease. We report 2 cases of Hodgkin disease in pediatric patients who presented with neurologic signs. One patient had paravertebral masses and involvement of thoracic vertebrae, which was initially misdiagnosed as spinal tuberculosis. The second patient who presented with paraplegia and bladder and bowel involvement had an epidural mass with collapse of thoracic vertebra. Lymph node biopsy revealed Hodgkin disease, mixed cellularity in both the cases. Both were treated with chemotherapy followed by radiotherapy.

  8. Spinal cord testing: auditing for quality assurance.

    PubMed

    Marr, J A; Reid, B

    1991-04-01

    A quality assurance audit of spinal cord testing as documented by staff nurses was carried out. Twenty-five patient records were examined for accuracy of documented testing and compared to assessments performed by three investigators. A pilot study established interrater reliability of a tool that was designed especially for this study. Results indicated staff nurses failed to meet pre-established 100% standard in all categories of testing when compared with investigator's findings. Possible reasons for this disparity are discussed as well as indications for modifications in the spinal testing record, teaching program and preset standards.

  9. SCT: Spinal Cord Toolbox, an open-source software for processing spinal cord MRI data.

    PubMed

    De Leener, Benjamin; Lévy, Simon; Dupont, Sara M; Fonov, Vladimir S; Stikov, Nikola; Louis Collins, D; Callot, Virginie; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2017-01-15

    For the past 25 years, the field of neuroimaging has witnessed the development of several software packages for processing multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) to study the brain. These software packages are now routinely used by researchers and clinicians, and have contributed to important breakthroughs for the understanding of brain anatomy and function. However, no software package exists to process mpMRI data of the spinal cord. Despite the numerous clinical needs for such advanced mpMRI protocols (multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, cervical spondylotic myelopathy, etc.), researchers have been developing specific tools that, while necessary, do not provide an integrative framework that is compatible with most usages and that is capable of reaching the community at large. This hinders cross-validation and the possibility to perform multi-center studies. In this study we introduce the Spinal Cord Toolbox (SCT), a comprehensive software dedicated to the processing of spinal cord MRI data. SCT builds on previously-validated methods and includes state-of-the-art MRI templates and atlases of the spinal cord, algorithms to segment and register new data to the templates, and motion correction methods for diffusion and functional time series. SCT is tailored towards standardization and automation of the processing pipeline, versatility, modularity, and it follows guidelines of software development and distribution. Preliminary applications of SCT cover a variety of studies, from cross-sectional area measures in large databases of patients, to the precise quantification of mpMRI metrics in specific spinal pathways. We anticipate that SCT will bring together the spinal cord neuroimaging community by establishing standard templates and analysis procedures.

  10. Noninvasive Spinal Cord Stimulation: Technical Aspects and Therapeutic Applications.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Taylor, Alexandra; Thomschewski, Aljoscha; Orioli, Andrea; Frey, Vanessa; Trinka, Eugen; Brigo, Francesco

    2015-10-01

    Electrical and magnetic trans-spinal stimulation can be used to increase the motor output of multiple spinal segments and modulate cortico-spinal excitability. The application of direct current through the scalp as well as repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation are known to influence brain excitability, and hence can also modulate other central nervous system structures, including spinal cord. This study aimed to evaluate the effects and the therapeutic usefulness of these noninvasive neuromodulatory techniques in healthy subjects and in the neurorehabilitation of patients with spinal cord disorders, as well as to discuss the possible mechanisms of action. A comprehensive review that summarizes previous studies using noninvasive spinal cord stimulation is lacking. PubMed (MEDLINE) and EMBASE were systematically searched to identify the most relevant published studies. We performed here an extensive review in this field. By decreasing the spinal reflex excitability, electrical and magnetic trans-spinal stimulation could be helpful in normalizing reflex hyperexcitability and treating hypertonia in subjects with lesions to upper motor neurons. Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation, based on applying direct current through the skin, influences the ascending and descending spinal pathways as well as spinal reflex excitability, and there is increasing evidence that it also can induce prolonged functional neuroplastic changes. When delivered repetitively, magnetic stimulation could also modulate spinal cord functions; however, at present only a few studies have documented spastic-reducing effects induced by repetitive spinal magnetic stimulation. Moreover, paired peripheral and transcranial stimulation can be used to target the spinal cord and may have potential for neuromodulation in spinal cord-injured subjects. Noninvasive electrical and magnetic spinal stimulation may provide reliable means to characterize important neurophysiologic and

  11. Repair therapies in spinal cord injuries.

    PubMed

    Tederko, Piotr; Krasuski, Marek; Kiwerski, Jerzy; Nyka, Izabela; Białoszewski, Dariusz

    2009-01-01

    Spinal cord repair therapies (SCRT) are experimental treatments which are attracting a growing interest among both spinal cord injury sufferers and their families as well as physicians and physiotherapists. Basing on current professional literature, this article presents the most important SCRT strategies. The majority of currently developed SCRTs are at the stage of experimental in vitro or animal studies. Few of these studies are in the early clinical trial stage or are being offered as non-standard commercial health care services. Basing on a review of the literature, it can be stated that currently there are few studies which meet the criterion of reliability, and their results make possible an objective assessment of the safety and efficacy of SCRT. Available study results are insufficient to confirm the advisability of widespread application of these methods.

  12. Hydrogels in Spinal Cord Injury Repair Strategies

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Nowadays there are at present no efficient therapies for spinal cord injury (SCI), and new approaches have to be proposed. Recently, a new regenerative medicine strategy has been suggested using smart biomaterials able to carry and deliver cells and/or drugs in the damaged spinal cord. Among the wide field of emerging materials, research has been focused on hydrogels, three-dimensional polymeric networks able to swell and absorb a large amount of water. The present paper intends to give an overview of a wide range of natural, synthetic, and composite hydrogels with particular efforts for the ones studied in the last five years. Here, different hydrogel applications are underlined, together with their different nature, in order to have a clearer view of what is happening in one of the most sparkling fields of regenerative medicine. PMID:22816020

  13. Thoracic spinal cord compression by a tophus.

    PubMed

    Ntsiba, Honoré; Makosso, Edouard; Moyikoua, Armand

    2010-03-01

    We report a case of thoracic (T10) spinal cord compression by a tophus in a patient with known chronic gout. Spastic paraplegia developed gradually over 6 months in this 43-year-old man with hypertension, alcohol abuse, and chronic gouty arthritis with tophi. Magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography visualized an intradural nodule measuring 1.5cm in diameter at the level of T10, as well as geodes in the left T10 lamina and left T9-T10 articular processes. The nodule was removed surgically and shown by histological examination to be a tophus. The neurological impairments resolved rapidly and completely. We found about 60 similar cases in the literature. Spinal cord compression in a patient with chronic gout can be caused by a tophus. Copyright 2010 Société française de rhumatologie. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  14. Therapeutic Antibodies for Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Tang, Dan-Yang; Zhao, Wei-Jiang

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a long-lasting damage in the spinal cord that leads to paraparesis, paraplegia, quadriplegia and other lifetime disabilities. The underlying mechanisms responsible for the failure of axonal regeneration after SCI remain only partially understood. Although a spectrum of medical treatments has been made available for this disease, the therapeutic effects remain disappointing. The emergence of antibody treatment has paved a new pathway for the management of SCI. In this current review, we summarized the application of antibodies in SCI in studies of myelin repair, neuroprotection, axon outgrowth, and anti-immune reaction. In the meantime, the combination treatment of the antibody with other reagents or stem cell transplant was also reviewed. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  15. Cardiac dysfunctions following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Sandu, AM; Popescu, M; Iacobini, MA; Stoian, R; Neascu, C; Popa, F

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyze cardiac dysfunctions occurring after spinal cord injury (SCI). Cardiac dysfunctions are common complications following SCI. Cardiovascular disturbances are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in both acute and chronic stages of SCI. We reviewed epidemiology of cardiac disturbances after SCI, and neuroanatomy and pathophysiology of autonomic nervous system, sympathetic and parasympathetic. SCI causes disruption of descendent pathways from central control centers to spinal sympathetic neurons, originating into intermediolateral nuclei of T1–L2 spinal cord segments. Loss of supraspinal control over sympathetic nervous system results in reduced overall sympathetic activity below the level of injury and unopposed parasympathetic outflow through intact vagal nerve. SCI associates significant cardiac dysfunction. Impairment of autonomic nervous control system, mostly in patients with cervical or high thoracic SCI, causes cardiac dysrrhythmias, especially bradycardia and, rarely, cardiac arrest, or tachyarrhytmias and hypotension. Specific complication dependent on the period of time after trauma like spinal shock and autonomic dysreflexia are also reviewed. Spinal shock occurs during the acute phase following SCI and is a transitory suspension of function and reflexes below the level of the injury. Neurogenic shock, part of spinal shock, consists of severe bradycardia and hypotension. Autonomic dysreflexia appears during the chronic phase, after spinal shock resolution, and it is a life–threatening syndrome of massive imbalanced reflex sympathetic discharge occurring in patients with SCI above the splanchnic sympathetic outflow (T5–T6). Besides all this, additional cardiac complications, such as cardiac deconditioning and coronary heart disease may also occur. Proper prophylaxis, including nonpharmacologic and pharmacological strategies and cardiac rehabilitation diminish occurrence of the cardiac dysfunction following

  16. Common mechanisms of compensatory respiratory plasticity in spinal neurological disorders

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Rebecca A.; Mitchell, Gordon S.

    2013-01-01

    In many neurological disorders that disrupt spinal function and compromise breathing (e.g. ALS, cervical spinal injury, MS), patients often maintain ventilatory capacity well after the onset of severe CNS pathology. In progressive neurodegenerative diseases, patients ultimately reach a point where compensation is no longer possible, leading to catastrophic ventilatory failure. In this brief review, we consider evidence that common mechanisms of compensatory respiratory plasticity preserve breathing capacity in diverse clinical disorders, despite the onset of severe pathology (e.g. respiratory motor neuron denervation and/or death). We propose that a suite of mechanisms, operating at distinct sites in the respiratory control system, underlies compensatory respiratory plasticity, including: 1) increased (descending) central respiratory drive, 2) motor neuron plasticity, 3) plasticity at the neuromuscular junction or spared respiratory motor neurons, and 4) shifts in the balance from more to less severely compromised respiratory muscles. To establish this framework, we contrast three rodent models of neural dysfunction, each posing unique problems for the generation of adequate inspiratory motor output: 1) respiratory motor neuron death, 2) de- or dysmyelination of cervical spinal pathways, and 3) cervical spinal cord injury, a neuropathology with components of demyelination and motor neuron death. Through this contrast, we hope to understand the multilayered strategies used to “fight” for adequate breathing in the face of mounting pathology. PMID:23727226

  17. Update on traumatic acute spinal cord injury. Part 1.

    PubMed

    Galeiras Vázquez, R; Ferreiro Velasco, M E; Mourelo Fariña, M; Montoto Marqués, A; Salvador de la Barrera, S

    2017-02-01

    Traumatic spinal cord injury requires a multidisciplinary approach both for specialized treatment of the acute phase and for dealing with the secondary complications. A suspicion or diagnosis of spinal cord injury is the first step for a correct management. A review is made of the prehospital management and characteristics of the acute phase of spinal cord injury. Respiratory monitoring for early selective intubation, proper identification and treatment of neurogenic shock are essential for the prevention of secondary spinal cord injury. The use of corticosteroids is currently not a standard practice in neuroprotective treatment, and hemodynamic monitoring and early surgical decompression constitute the cornerstones of adequate management. Traumatic spinal cord injury usually occurs as part of multiple trauma, and this can make diagnosis difficult. Neurological examination and correct selection of radiological exams prevent delayed diagnosis of spinal cord injuries, and help to establish the prognosis.

  18. Isolated in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations remain important tools in respiratory neurobiology.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Stephen M; Turner, Sara M; Huxtable, Adrianne G; Ben-Mabrouk, Faiza

    2012-01-15

    Isolated in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations are used extensively in respiratory neurobiology because the respiratory network in the pons and medulla is intact, monosynaptic descending inputs to spinal motoneurons can be activated, brainstem and spinal cord tissue can be bathed with different solutions, and the responses of cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spinal motoneurons to experimental perturbations can be compared. The caveats and limitations of in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations are well-documented. However, isolated brainstem-spinal cords are still valuable experimental preparations that can be used to study neuronal connectivity within the brainstem, development of motor networks with lethal genetic mutations, deleterious effects of pathological drugs and conditions, respiratory spinal motor plasticity, and interactions with other motor behaviors. Our goal is to show how isolated brainstem-spinal cord preparations still have a lot to offer scientifically and experimentally to address questions within and outside the field of respiratory neurobiology. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Anorgasmia in anterior spinal cord syndrome.

    PubMed Central

    Berić, A; Light, J K

    1993-01-01

    Three male and two female patients with anorgasmia and dissociated sensory loss due to an anterior spinal cord syndrome are described. Clinical, neurophysiological and quantitative sensory evaluation revealed preservation of the large fibre dorsal column functions from the lumbosacral segments with concomitant severe dysfunction or absence of the small fibre neospinothalamic mediated functions. These findings indicate a role for the spinothalamic system in orgasm. PMID:8505649

  20. Alleviating Autonomic Dysreflexia after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    SPN innervation. We have previously shown that we are able to promote robust functional axonal regeneration using a combination of transplantation and...spinal cord injury, transplantation , axon regeneration   2   ACCOMPLISHMENTS Through 9-30-2014 through 9-30-2015, we focused our efforts on...pressure and heart rate in conscious animals. At least one week later, we assay blood pressure and heart rate in these animals at rest and after

  1. Tracking Changes following Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Curt, Armin; Friston, Karl; Thompson, Alan

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic spinal cord injury is often disabling and recovery of function is limited. As a consequence of damage, both spinal cord and brain undergo anatomical and functional changes. Besides clinical measures of recovery, biomarkers that can detect early anatomical and functional changes might be useful in determining clinical outcome—during the course of rehabilitation and recovery—as well as furnishing a tool to evaluate novel treatment interventions and their mechanisms of action. Recent evidence suggests an interesting three-way relationship between neurological deficit and changes in the spinal cord and of the brain and that, importantly, noninvasive magnetic resonance imaging techniques, both structural and functional, provide a sensitive tool to lay out these interactions. This review describes recent findings from multimodal imaging studies of remote anatomical changes (i.e., beyond the lesion site), cortical reorganization, and their relationship to clinical disability. These developments in this field may improve our understanding of effects on the nervous system that are attributable to the injury itself and will allow their distinction from changes that result from rehabilitation (i.e., functional retraining) and from interventions affecting the nervous system directly (i.e., neuroprotection or regeneration). PMID:22730072

  2. Spinal cord evolution in early Homo.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Marc R; Haeusler, Martin

    2015-11-01

    The discovery at Nariokotome of the Homo erectus skeleton KNM-WT 15000, with a narrow spinal canal, seemed to show that this relatively large-brained hominin retained the primitive spinal cord size of African apes and that brain size expansion preceded postcranial neurological evolution. Here we compare the size and shape of the KNM-WT 15000 spinal canal with modern and fossil taxa including H. erectus from Dmanisi, Homo antecessor, the European middle Pleistocene hominins from Sima de los Huesos, and Pan troglodytes. In terms of shape and absolute and relative size of the spinal canal, we find all of the Dmanisi and most of the vertebrae of KNM-WT 15000 are within the human range of variation except for the C7, T2, and T3 of KNM-WT 15000, which are constricted, suggesting spinal stenosis. While additional fossils might definitively indicate whether H. erectus had evolved a human-like enlarged spinal canal, the evidence from the Dmanisi spinal canal and the unaffected levels of KNM-WT 15000 show that unlike Australopithecus, H. erectus had a spinal canal size and shape equivalent to that of modern humans. Subadult status is unlikely to affect our results, as spinal canal growth is complete in both individuals. We contest the notion that vertebrae yield information about respiratory control or language evolution, but suggest that, like H. antecessor and European middle Pleistocene hominins from Sima de los Huesos, early Homo possessed a postcranial neurological endowment roughly commensurate to modern humans, with implications for neurological, structural, and vascular improvements over Pan and Australopithecus.

  3. Resolvin D2 is a potent endogenous inhibitor for transient receptor potential subtype V1/A1, inflammatory pain, and spinal cord synaptic plasticity in mice: distinct roles of resolvin D1, D2, and E1.

    PubMed

    Park, Chul-Kyu; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Liu, Tong; Lü, Ning; Serhan, Charles N; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2011-12-14

    Inflammatory pain such as arthritic pain is typically treated with opioids and cyclo-oxygenase-2 inhibitors with well known side effects. Transient receptor potential subtype vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) and TRP ankyryn 1 (TRPA1) contribute importantly to the genesis of inflammatory pain via both peripheral mechanisms (peripheral sensitization) and spinal cord mechanisms (central sensitization). Although these TRP channels have been intensively studied, little is known about their endogenous inhibitors. Recent studies have demonstrated that the endogenous lipid mediators resolvins (RvE1 and RvD1), derived from ω-3 unsaturated fatty acids, are potent inhibitors for inflammatory pain, without noticeable side effects. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying resolvins' distinct analgesic actions in mice are unclear. RvD2 is a novel family member of resolvins. Here we report that RvD2 is a remarkably potent inhibitor of TRPV1 (IC(50) = 0.1 nm) and TRPA1 (IC(50) = 2 nm) in primary sensory neurons, whereas RvE1 and RvD1 selectively inhibited TRPV1 (IC(50) = 1 nm) and TRPA1 (IC(50) = 9 nm), respectively. Accordingly, RvD2, RvE1, and RvD1 differentially regulated TRPV1 and TRPA1 agonist-elicited acute pain and spinal cord synaptic plasticity [spontaneous EPSC (sEPSC) frequency increase]. RvD2 also abolished inflammation-induced sEPSC increases (frequency and amplitude), without affecting basal synaptic transmission. Intrathecal administration of RvD2 at very low doses (0.01-1 ng) prevented formalin-induced spontaneous pain. Intrathecal RvD2 also reversed adjuvant-induced inflammatory pain without altering baseline pain and motor function. Finally, intrathecal RvD2 reversed C-fiber stimulation-evoked long-term potentiation in the spinal cord. Our findings suggest distinct roles of resolvins in regulating TRP channels and identify RvD2 as a potent endogenous inhibitor for TRPV1/TRPA1 and inflammatory pain.

  4. Optical monitoring of spinal cord hemodynamics, a feasibility study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shadgan, Babak; Kwon, Brian K.; Streijger, Femke; Manouchehri, Neda; So, Kitty; Shortt, Katelyn; Cripton, Peter A.; Macnab, Andrew

    2017-02-01

    Background: After an acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI), the spinal cord is subjected to ischemia, hypoxia, and increased hydrostatic pressure which exacerbate further secondary damage and neuronal deficit. The purpose of this pilot study was to explore the use of near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) for non-invasive and real-time monitoring of these changes within the injured spinal cord in an animal model. NIRS is a non-invasive optical technique that utilizes light in the near infrared spectrum to monitor changes in the concentration of tissue chromophores from which alterations in tissues oxygenation and perfusion can be inferred in real time. Methods: A custom-made miniaturized NIRS sensor was developed to monitor spinal cord hemodynamics and oxygenation noninvasively and in real time simultaneously with invasive, intraparenchymal monitoring in a pig model of SCI. The spinal cord around the T10 injury site was instrumented with intraparenchymal probes inserted directly into the spinal cord to measure oxygen pressure, blood flow, and hydrostatic pressure, and the same region of the spinal cord was monitored with the custom-designed extradural NIRS probe. We investigated how well the extradural NIRS probe detected intraparenchymal changes adjacent to the injury site after alterations in systemic blood pressure, global hypoxia, and traumatic injury generated by a weight-drop contusion. Results: The NIRS sensor successfully identified periods of systemic hypoxia, re-ventilation and changes in spinal cord perfusion and oxygenation during alterations of mean arterial pressure and following spinal cord injury. Conclusion: This pilot study indicates that extradural NIRS monitoring of the spinal cord is feasible as a non-invasive optical method to identify changes in spinal cord hemodynamics and oxygenation in real time. Further development of this technique would allow clinicians to monitor real-time physiologic changes within the injured spinal cord during the

  5. Review of Epidural Spinal Cord Stimulation for Augmenting Cough after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Hachmann, Jan T.; Calvert, Jonathan S.; Grahn, Peter J.; Drubach, Dina I.; Lee, Kendall H.; Lavrov, Igor A.

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) remains a debilitating condition for which there is no cure. In addition to loss of somatic sensorimotor functions, SCI is also commonly associated with impairment of autonomic function. Importantly, cough dysfunction due to paralysis of expiratory muscles in combination with respiratory insufficiency can render affected individuals vulnerable to respiratory morbidity. Failure to clear sputum can aggravate both risk for and severity of respiratory infections, accounting for frequent hospitalizations and even mortality. Recently, epidural stimulation of the lower thoracic spinal cord has been investigated as novel means for restoring cough by evoking expiratory muscle contraction to generate large positive airway pressures and expulsive air flow. This review article discusses available preclinical and clinical evidence, current challenges and clinical potential of lower thoracic spinal cord stimulation (SCS) for restoring cough in individuals with SCI. PMID:28400726

  6. Review of Epidural Spinal Cord Stimulation for Augmenting Cough after Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Hachmann, Jan T; Calvert, Jonathan S; Grahn, Peter J; Drubach, Dina I; Lee, Kendall H; Lavrov, Igor A

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) remains a debilitating condition for which there is no cure. In addition to loss of somatic sensorimotor functions, SCI is also commonly associated with impairment of autonomic function. Importantly, cough dysfunction due to paralysis of expiratory muscles in combination with respiratory insufficiency can render affected individuals vulnerable to respiratory morbidity. Failure to clear sputum can aggravate both risk for and severity of respiratory infections, accounting for frequent hospitalizations and even mortality. Recently, epidural stimulation of the lower thoracic spinal cord has been investigated as novel means for restoring cough by evoking expiratory muscle contraction to generate large positive airway pressures and expulsive air flow. This review article discusses available preclinical and clinical evidence, current challenges and clinical potential of lower thoracic spinal cord stimulation (SCS) for restoring cough in individuals with SCI.

  7. What Are the Key Statistics about Brain and Spinal Cord Cancers?

    MedlinePlus

    ... in Adults What Are the Key Statistics About Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors? The American Cancer Society’s ... Spinal Cord Tumor Research and Treatment? More In Brain And Spinal Cord Tumors In Adults About Brain ...

  8. Tert-butylhydroquinone protects the spinal cord against inflammatory response produced by spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Jin, Wei; Ni, Hongbin; Hou, Xiaoshan; Ming, Xing; Wang, Jing; Yuan, Baoyu; Zhu, Tiansheng; Jiang, Jian; Wang, Handong; Liang, Weibang

    2014-01-01

    Antioxidant transcription factor nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) has been shown in our previous studies to play an important role in protection against spinal cord injury (SCI) induced inflammatory response. The objective of this study was to test whether tert-butylhydroquinone (tBHQ), a novel Nrf2 activator, can protect the spinal cord against SCI-induced inflammatory damage. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to laminectomy at T8-T9 and compression with a vascular clip. Three groups were analyzed: a sham group, a SCI group, and a SCI+rhEPO group (n=16 per group). We measured Nrf2 and nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) binding activities by an electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA). We also measured the concentrations of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA); we also measured hindlimb locomotion function by the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) rating, spinal cord edema by wet/dry weight method, and apoptosis by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) analysis. The results showed that the induction of the Nrf2 activity by tBHQ markedly decreased NF-κB activation and inflammatory cytokines production in the injured spinal cord. Administration of tBHQ also significantly attenuated SCI induced hindlimb locomotion deficits, spinal cord edema, and apoptosis. To conclude, pre-treatment with tBHQ could attenuate the spinal cord inflammatory response after SCI.

  9. Chondroitinase ABC Combined with Neurotrophin NT-3 Secretion and NR2D Expression Promotes Axonal Plasticity and Functional Recovery in Rats with Lateral Hemisection of the Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    García-Alías, Guillermo; Petrosyan, Hayk A.; Schnell, Lisa; Horner, Philip J.; Bowers, William J.; Mendell, Lorne M.; Fawcett, James W.

    2011-01-01

    Elevating spinal levels of neurotrophin NT-3 (NT3) while increasing expression of the NR2D subunit of the NMDA receptor using a HSV viral construct promotes formation of novel multisynaptic projections from lateral white matter (LWM) axons to motoneurons in neonates. However, this treatment is ineffective after postnatal day 10. Because chondroitinase ABC (ChABC) treatment restores plasticity in the adult CNS, we have added ChABC to this treatment and applied the combination to adult rats receiving a left lateral hemisection (Hx) at T8. All hemisected animals initially dragged the ipsilateral hindpaw and displayed abnormal gait. Rats treated with ChABC or NT3/HSV-NR2D recovered partial hindlimb locomotor function, but animals receiving combined therapy displayed the most improved body stability and interlimb coordination [Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor scale and gait analysis]. Electrical stimulation of the left LWM at T6 did not evoke any synaptic response in ipsilateral L5 motoneurons of control hemisected animals, indicating interruption of the white matter. Only animals with the full combination treatment recovered consistent multisynaptic responses in these motoneurons indicating formation of a detour pathway around the Hx. These physiological findings were supported by the observation of increased branching of both cut and intact LWM axons into the gray matter near the injury. ChABC-treated animals displayed more sprouting than control animals and those receiving NT3/HSV-NR2D; animals receiving the combination of all three treatments showed the most sprouting. Our results indicate that therapies aimed at increasing plasticity, promoting axon growth and modulating synaptic function have synergistic effects and promote better functional recovery than if applied individually. PMID:22159095

  10. Chondroitinase ABC combined with neurotrophin NT-3 secretion and NR2D expression promotes axonal plasticity and functional recovery in rats with lateral hemisection of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    García-Alías, Guillermo; Petrosyan, Hayk A; Schnell, Lisa; Horner, Philip J; Bowers, William J; Mendell, Lorne M; Fawcett, James W; Arvanian, Victor L

    2011-12-07

    Elevating spinal levels of neurotrophin NT-3 (NT3) while increasing expression of the NR2D subunit of the NMDA receptor using a HSV viral construct promotes formation of novel multisynaptic projections from lateral white matter (LWM) axons to motoneurons in neonates. However, this treatment is ineffective after postnatal day 10. Because chondroitinase ABC (ChABC) treatment restores plasticity in the adult CNS, we have added ChABC to this treatment and applied the combination to adult rats receiving a left lateral hemisection (Hx) at T8. All hemisected animals initially dragged the ipsilateral hindpaw and displayed abnormal gait. Rats treated with ChABC or NT3/HSV-NR2D recovered partial hindlimb locomotor function, but animals receiving combined therapy displayed the most improved body stability and interlimb coordination [Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor scale and gait analysis]. Electrical stimulation of the left LWM at T6 did not evoke any synaptic response in ipsilateral L5 motoneurons of control hemisected animals, indicating interruption of the white matter. Only animals with the full combination treatment recovered consistent multisynaptic responses in these motoneurons indicating formation of a detour pathway around the Hx. These physiological findings were supported by the observation of increased branching of both cut and intact LWM axons into the gray matter near the injury. ChABC-treated animals displayed more sprouting than control animals and those receiving NT3/HSV-NR2D; animals receiving the combination of all three treatments showed the most sprouting. Our results indicate that therapies aimed at increasing plasticity, promoting axon growth and modulating synaptic function have synergistic effects and promote better functional recovery than if applied individually.

  11. Congenital malformations of the spinal cord without early symptoms.

    PubMed

    Moffie, D; Stefanko, S Z; Makkink, B

    1986-01-01

    Description of 11 patients with congenital malformations of the spinal cord. Six of them were males, five females and the age varied from 7 to 70 years. Most of these cases produced clinical neurological signs indicating spinal cord disease in later life during an intercurrent disease. It was thought that changes in the bloodvessels and/or perfusion of the area of the spinal cord malformation was the ultimate cause of the neurological symptoms. An exact explanation of the origin of these developmental disturbances of the spinal cord remains unknown. Different hypotheses proposed in the literature, concerning these malformations, are not satisfactory.

  12. Effect of hypovolemia on traumatic spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    de Cassia Sampaio, O; Defino, H L A; Del Bel Belluz Guimarães, E A

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: Experimentally evaluate the effect of hypovolemia in acute traumatic spinal cord injury. Methods: Twenty adult male Wistar rats were submitted to traumatic spinal cord injury through spinal cord contusion by direct impact. Ten animals were subjected to bleeding of 20% of their estimated blood to simulate a hypovolemic condition after spinal cord contusion and 10 animals were used as control. The animals were evaluated before, 1, 3, 7 and 14 days after the production of the spinal cord injury through behavioral tests (inclined plane test and motor assessment). Results: The spinal cord contusion associated with hypovolemia had a negative influence on functional outcomes of the spinal cord injury. The animals submitted to hypovolemia after spinal cord contusion had lower scores in behavioral tests (inclined plane test and motor assessment), presenting a slower recovery of the motor function. Conclusion: In the experimental model used, the group of animals with hypovolemia after traumatic spinal cord injury had slower recovery and lower intensity in behavioral tests. PMID:26951739

  13. The spinal cord: a review of functional neuroanatomy.

    PubMed

    Bican, Orhan; Minagar, Alireza; Pruitt, Amy A

    2013-02-01

    The spinal cord controls the voluntary muscles of the trunk and limbs and receives sensory input from these areas. It extends from the medulla oblongata to the lower border of the first lumbar vertebra. A basic knowledge of spinal cord anatomy is essential for interpretation of clinical signs and symptoms and for understanding of pathologic processes involving the spinal cord. In this article, anatomic structures are correlated with relevant clinical signs and symptoms and a step-wise approach to spinal cord diagnosis is outlined.

  14. Subacute combined degeneration mimicking traumatic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Paul, Ian; Reichard, R Ross

    2009-03-01

    Subacute combined degeneration (SCD) of the spinal cord is the most common neurologic manifestation of vitamin B12 (cobalamin) deficiency and is usually secondary to autoimmune gastritis, but may also be seen in malnutrition syndromes such as chronic alcoholism, strict vegetarianism, gastrectomy, and also in nitrous oxide abuse. Although traumatic spinal cord injury is routinely encountered in the medical examiner's office, medical causes of spinal cord abnormalities such as SCD should be considered in the appropriate clinical setting. We report a case of alcohol-associated SCD mimicking traumatic spinal cord injury.

  15. Optical Monitoring and Detection of Spinal Cord Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Mesquita, Rickson C.; D’Souza, Angela; Bilfinger, Thomas V.; Galler, Robert M.; Emanuel, Asher; Schenkel, Steven S.; Yodh, Arjun G.; Floyd, Thomas F.

    2013-01-01

    Spinal cord ischemia can lead to paralysis or paraparesis, but if detected early it may be amenable to treatment. Current methods use evoked potentials for detection of spinal cord ischemia, a decades old technology whose warning signs are indirect and significantly delayed from the onset of ischemia. Here we introduce and demonstrate a prototype fiber optic device that directly measures spinal cord blood flow and oxygenation. This technical advance in neurological monitoring promises a new standard of care for detection of spinal cord ischemia and the opportunity for early intervention. We demonstrate the probe in an adult Dorset sheep model. Both open and percutaneous approaches were evaluated during pharmacologic, physiological, and mechanical interventions designed to induce variations in spinal cord blood flow and oxygenation. The induced variations were rapidly and reproducibly detected, demonstrating direct measurement of spinal cord ischemia in real-time. In the future, this form of hemodynamic spinal cord diagnosis could significantly improve monitoring and management in a broad range of patients, including those undergoing thoracic and abdominal aortic revascularization, spine stabilization procedures for scoliosis and trauma, spinal cord tumor resection, and those requiring management of spinal cord injury in intensive care settings. PMID:24358279

  16. In-vivo spinal cord deformation in flexion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Qing; Dougherty, Lawrence; Margulies, Susan S.

    1997-05-01

    Traumatic mechanical loading of the head-neck complex results cervical spinal cord injury when the distortion of the cord is sufficient to produce functional or structural failure of the cord's neural and/or vascular components. Characterizing cervical spinal cord deformation during physiological loading conditions is an important step to defining a comprehensive injury threshold associated with acute spinal cord injury. In this study, in vivo quasi- static deformation of the cervical spinal cord during flexion of the neck in human volunteers was measured using magnetic resonance (MR) imaging of motion with spatial modulation of magnetization (SPAMM). A custom-designed device was built to guide the motion of the neck and enhance more reproducibility. the SPAMM pulse sequence labeled the tissue with a series of parallel tagging lines. A single- shot gradient-recalled-echo sequence was used to acquire the mid-sagittal image of the cervical spine. A comparison of the tagged line pattern in each MR reference and deformed image pair revealed the distortion of the spinal cord. The results showed the cervical spinal cord elongates during head flexion. The elongation experienced by the spinal cord varies linearly with head flexion, with the posterior surface of the cord stretching more than the anterior surface. The maximal elongation of the cord is about 12 percent of its original length.

  17. Pediatric Spinal Cord Tumors and Masses

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Pamela E; Oleszek, Joyce L; Clayton, Gerald H

    2007-01-01

    Background/Objective: Spinal cord tumors are a relatively rare diagnosis, accounting for 1% to 10% of all pediatric central nervous system tumors. Understanding the etiology and clinical outcomes of these tumors is therefore very important. This study presents detailed information regarding clinical presentation, histological findings, outcomes, functional assessment, and management of a series of patients with this diagnosis. Method: Retrospective, descriptive study. Subjects: Thirty-five children with a final diagnosis of spinal cord tumor or mass, excluding dysraphism. Results: Neurodevelopmental tumors (dermoid tumors, epidermoid tumors, and teratomas) were the most common tumor type (31%), followed by astrocytomas (29%) and neuroblastomas (14%). Other types included schwannomas, meningiomas, giant cell tumors, extradural cystic masses, leukemic-related masses, and masses related to neurofibromatosis. Mean age at diagnosis was 6.6 years (SD = 5.5 y) and did not vary significantly by tumor type except for children with neuroblastoma (mean = 0.4 y, SD = 0.5 y). More boys (57%) were identified in the series than girls (43%); however, there was no association between tumor type and sex. Presenting complaints of pain were noted in 57% and were localized to the back, neck, or extremities. Extremity weakness was reported as an initial presenting symptom in 46%. Three children had scoliosis as a presenting issue and 14 had gait abnormalities. Regardless of treatment modality, mobility was retained in 83% of children with or without gait aids. Neurogenic bowel and/or bladder were present in 23% of the population. Conclusions: This study corroborates other studies indicating that intramedullary tumors are the predominant form of pediatric spinal cord tumor. This population, however, presented with an unusually large number of developmental tumors, contrary to several published studies. The disparity may be the result of this institution acting as a regional referral

  18. Restoring walking after spinal cord injury: operant conditioning of spinal reflexes can help.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Aiko K; Wolpaw, Jonathan R

    2015-04-01

    People with incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI) frequently suffer motor disabilities due to spasticity and poor muscle control, even after conventional therapy. Abnormal spinal reflex activity often contributes to these problems. Operant conditioning of spinal reflexes, which can target plasticity to specific reflex pathways, can enhance recovery. In rats in which a right lateral column lesion had weakened right stance and produced an asymmetrical gait, up-conditioning of the right soleus H-reflex, which increased muscle spindle afferent excitation of soleus, strengthened right stance and eliminated the asymmetry. In people with hyperreflexia due to incomplete SCI, down-conditioning of the soleus H-reflex improved walking speed and symmetry. Furthermore, modulation of electromyographic activity during walking improved bilaterally, indicating that a protocol that targets plasticity to a specific pathway can trigger widespread plasticity that improves recovery far beyond that attributable to the change in the targeted pathway. These improvements were apparent to people in their daily lives. They reported walking faster and farther, and noted less spasticity and better balance. Operant conditioning protocols could be developed to modify other spinal reflexes or corticospinal connections; and could be combined with other therapies to enhance recovery in people with SCI or other neuromuscular disorders. © The Author(s) 2014.

  19. Clinical radiology of the spine and spinal cord

    SciTech Connect

    Banna, M.

    1985-01-01

    This book is a source of information about aspects of radiology of the spine and spinal column. It presents coverage of both normal and abnormal conditions. Contents: Spinal fractures and dislocations. Degenerative diseases of the spine. Gross anatomy of the spinal cord and meninges. Intraspinal mass lesions. Spinal dysraphism. Congenital anomalies. Tumors of the vertebral column, and more.

  20. Central pattern generators of the mammalian spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Frigon, Alain

    2012-02-01

    Neuronal networks within the spinal cord of mammals are responsible for generating various rhythmic movements, such as walking, running, swimming, and scratching. The ability to generate multiple rhythmic movements highlights the complexity and flexibility of the mammalian spinal circuitry. The present review describes features of some rhythmic motor behaviors generated by the mammalian spinal cord and discusses how the spinal circuitry is able to produce different rhythmic movements with their own sets of goals and demands.

  1. Molecular basis of vascular events following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Popa, F; Grigorean, VT; Onose, G; Sandu, A; Popescu, M; Burnei, G; Strambu, V; Popa, C

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyze the effects of the molecular basis of vascular events following spinal cord injury and their contribution in pathogenesis. First of all, we reviewed the anatomy of spinal cord vessels. The pathophysiology of spinal cord injuries revealed two types of pathogenic mechanisms. The primary event, the mechanic trauma, results in a disruption of neural and vascular structures into the spinal cord. It is followed by secondary pathogenesis that leads to the progression of the initial lesion. We reviewed vascular responses following spinal cord injury, focusing on both primary and secondary events. The intraparenchymal hemorrhage is a direct consequence of trauma; it has a typical pattern of distribution into the contused spinal cord, inside the gray matter and, it is radially extended into the white matter. The intraparenchymal hemorrhage is restricted to the dorsal columns, into adjacent rostral and caudal spinal segments. Distribution of chronic lesions overlaps the pattern of the early intraparenchymal hemorrhage. We described the mechanisms of action, role, induction and distribution of the heme oxygenase isoenzymes 1 and 2. Posttraumatic inflammatory response contributes to secondary pathogenesis. We analyzed the types of cells participating in the inflammatory response, the moment of appearance after the injury, the decrease in number, and the nature of their actions. The disruption of the blood–spinal cord barrier is biphasic. It exposes the spinal cord to inflammatory cells and to toxic effects of other molecules. Endothelin 1 mediates oxidative stress into the spinal cord through the modulation of spinal cord blood flow. The role of matrix metalloproteinases in blood–spinal cord barrier disruption, inflammation, and angiogenesis are reviewed. PMID:20945816

  2. Cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury: always for good?

    PubMed Central

    Moxon, Karen A.; Oliviero, Antonio; Aguilar, Juan; Foffani, Guglielmo

    2015-01-01

    Plasticity constitutes the basis of behavioral changes as a result of experience. It refers to neural network shaping and re-shaping at the global level and to synaptic contacts remodeling at the local level, either during learning or memory encoding, or as a result of acute or chronic pathological conditions. ‘Plastic’ brain reorganization after central nervous system lesions has a pivotal role in the recovery and rehabilitation of sensory and motor dysfunction, but can also be “maladaptive”. Moreover, it is clear that brain reorganization it is not a “static” phenomenon but rather a very dynamic process. Spinal cord injury immediately initiates a change in brain state and starts cortical reorganization. In the long term, the impact of injury – with or without accompanying therapy – on the brain is a complex balance between supraspinal reorganization and spinal recovery. The degree of cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury is highly variable, and can range from no reorganization (i.e. “silencing”) to massive cortical remapping. This variability critically depends on the species, the age of the animal when the injury occurs, the time after the injury has occurred, and the behavioral activity and possible therapy regimes after the injury. We will briefly discuss these dependencies, trying to highlight their translational value. Overall, it is not only necessary to better understand how the brain can reorganize after injury with or without therapy, it is also necessary to clarify when and why brain reorganization can be either “good” or “bad” in terms of its clinical consequences. This information is critical in order to develop and optimize cost-effective therapies to maximize functional recovery while minimizing maladaptive states after spinal cord injury. PMID:24997269

  3. Passive cycling in neurorehabilitation after spinal cord injury: A review.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Orioli, Andrea; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Sebastianelli, Luca; Höller, Yvonne; Frey, Vanessa; Trinka, Eugen

    2017-01-01

    Passive cycling (PC) may represent a potential alternative neurorehabilitation program for patients who are too weak or medically unstable to repeatedly practice active movements. We review here the most important animal and human studies addressing PC after spinal cord injury (SCI). A MEDLINE search was performed using following terms: "passive", "cycling", "pedaling", "pedalling","spinal cord injury". Experimental studies revealed that PC modulated spinal reflex and reduced spasticity. PC also reduced autonomic dysreflexia and elicited cardio-protective effects. Increased levels of mRNA for brain-derived neurotrophic factor, glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor and neurotrophin-4 were found. In contrast, human studies failed to show an effect of PC on spasticity reduction and did not support its application for prevention of cardiovascular disease-related secondary complications. Available evidence to support the use of PC as standard treatment in patients with SCI is still rather limited. Since it is conceivable that PC motion could elicit sensory inputs to activate cortical structures and induce cortical plasticity changes leading to improved lower limb motor performance, further carefully designed prospective studies in subjects with SCI are needed.

  4. A progressive compression model of thoracic spinal cord injury in mice: function assessment and pathological changes in spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Guo-dong; Chen, Yan; Zhou, Zhi-gang; Yang, Shu-xian; Zhong, Cheng; Li, Zhi-zhong

    2017-01-01

    Non-traumatic injury accounts for approximately half of clinical spinal cord injury, including chronic spinal cord compression. However, previous rodent spinal cord compression models are mainly designed for rats, few are available for mice. Our aim is to develop a thoracic progressive compression mice model of spinal cord injury. In this study, adult wild-type C57BL/6 mice were divided into two groups: in the surgery group, a screw was inserted at T9 lamina to compress the spinal cord, and the compression was increased by turning it further into the canal (0.2 mm) post-surgery every 2 weeks up to 8 weeks. In the control group, a hole was drilled into the lamina without inserting a screw. The results showed that Basso Mouse Scale scores were lower and gait worsened. In addition, the degree of hindlimb dysfunction in mice was consistent with the degree of spinal cord compression. The number of motor neurons in the anterior horn of the spinal cord was reduced in all groups of mice, whereas astrocytes and microglia were gradually activated and proliferated. In conclusion, this progressive compression of thoracic spinal cord injury in mice is a preferable model for chronic progressive spinal cord compression injury. PMID:28966654

  5. RhoA/Rho kinase in spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Xiangbing; Xu, Xiao-ming

    2016-01-01

    A spinal cord injury refers to an injury to the spinal cord that is caused by a trauma instead of diseases. Spinal cord injury includes a primary mechanical injury and a much more complex secondary injury process involving inflammation, oxidation, excitotoxicity, and cell death. During the secondary injury, many signal pathways are activated and play important roles in mediating the pathogenesis of spinal cord injury. Among them, the RhoA/Rho kinase pathway plays a particular role in mediating spinal degeneration and regeneration. In this review, we will discuss the role and mechanism of RhoA/Rho kinase-mediated spinal cord pathogenesis, as well as the potential of targeting RhoA/Rho kinase as a strategy for promoting both neuroprotection and axonal regeneration. PMID:26981071

  6. Therapeutic Stimulation for Restoration of Function After Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Ievins, Aiva; Moritz, Chet T

    2017-09-01

    Paralysis due to spinal cord injury can severely limit motor function and independence. This review summarizes different approaches to electrical stimulation of the spinal cord designed to restore motor function, with a brief discussion of their origins and the current understanding of their mechanisms of action. Spinal stimulation leads to impressive improvements in motor function along with some benefits to autonomic functions such as bladder control. Nonetheless, the precise mechanisms underlying these improvements and the optimal spinal stimulation approaches for restoration of motor function are largely unknown. Finally, spinal stimulation may augment other therapies that address the molecular and cellular environment of the injured spinal cord. The fact that several stimulation approaches are now leading to substantial and durable improvements in function following spinal cord injury provides a new perspectives on the previously "incurable" condition of paralysis. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  7. Management of acute traumatic spinal cord injuries.

    PubMed

    Shank, C D; Walters, B C; Hadley, M N

    2017-01-01

    Acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating disease process affecting tens of thousands of people across the USA each year. Despite the increase in primary prevention measures, such as educational programs, motor vehicle speed limits, automobile running lights, and safety technology that includes automobile passive restraint systems and airbags, SCIs continue to carry substantial permanent morbidity and mortality. Medical measures implemented following the initial injury are designed to limit secondary insult to the spinal cord and to stabilize the spinal column in an attempt to decrease devastating sequelae. This chapter is an overview of the contemporary management of an acute traumatic SCI patient from the time of injury through the stay in the intensive care unit. We discuss initial triage, immobilization, and transportation of the patient by emergency medical services personnel to a definitive treatment facility. Upon arrival at the emergency department, we review initial trauma protocols and the evidence-based recommendations for radiographic evaluation of the patient's vertebral column. Finally, we outline closed cervical spine reduction and various aggressive medical therapies aimed at improving neurologic outcome.

  8. Subdural hematoma following spinal cord stimulator implant.

    PubMed

    Chiravuri, Srinivas; Wasserman, Ronald; Chawla, Amit; Haider, Naeem

    2008-01-01

    Headache following interventional procedures is a diagnostic challenge due to the multitude of possible etiologies involved. Presentation can be simple (PDPH alone) or complex (exacerbation of pre-existing chronic headache along with PDPH) or headache associated with a new onset intracranial process. Subdural hematoma is a rare complication of cranio-spinal trauma. Cranial subdural hematoma may present in an acute, sub-acute, or chronic fashion. Diagnosis of a subdural hematoma in the wake of a PDPH is difficult, requiring a high level of suspicion. Delayed diagnosis of subdural hematoma is usually related to failure to consider it in the differential diagnosis. Thorough history, assessment of the evolution of symptoms, and imaging studies may identify the possible cause and help direct treatment. Change in the character of initial presenting symptoms may be a sign of resolution of the headache or the onset of a secondary process. We report a case of acute intracranial subdural hematoma secondary to unintentional dural puncture during placement of a permanent spinal cord stimulator lead for refractory angina. There is need for careful follow-up of patients with a known post-dural tear. Failure to identify uncommon adverse events in patients with complicated spinal cord stimulator implantation may lead to permanent injury.

  9. Exercise Training after Spinal Cord Injury Selectively Alters Synaptic Properties in Neurons in Adult Mouse Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Flynn, Jamie R.; Dunn, Lynda R.; Galea, Mary P.; Callister, Robin; Rank, Michelle M.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Following spinal cord injury (SCI), anatomical changes such as axonal sprouting occur within weeks in the vicinity of the injury. Exercise training enhances axon sprouting; however, the exact mechanisms that mediate exercised-induced plasticity are unknown. We studied the effects of exercise training after SCI on the intrinsic and synaptic properties of spinal neurons in the immediate vicinity (<2 segments) of the SCI. Male mice (C57BL/6, 9–10 weeks old) received a spinal hemisection (T10) and after 1 week of recovery, they were randomized to trained (treadmill exercise for 3 weeks) and untrained (no exercise) groups. After 3 weeks, mice were killed and horizontal spinal cord slices (T6–L1, 250 μm thick) were prepared for visually guided whole cell patch clamp recording. Intrinsic properties, including resting membrane potential, input resistance, rheobase current, action potential (AP) threshold and after-hyperpolarization (AHP) amplitude were similar in neurons from trained and untrained mice (n=67 and 70 neurons, respectively). Neurons could be grouped into four categories based on their AP discharge during depolarizing current injection; the proportions of tonic firing, initial bursting, single spiking, and delayed firing neurons were similar in trained and untrained mice. The properties of spontaneous excitatory synaptic currents (sEPSCs) did not differ in trained and untrained animals. In contrast, evoked excitatory synaptic currents recorded after dorsal column stimulation were markedly increased in trained animals (peak amplitude 78.9±17.5 vs. 42.2±6.8 pA; charge 1054±376 vs. 348±75 pA·ms). These data suggest that 3 weeks of treadmill exercise does not affect the intrinsic properties of spinal neurons after SCI; however, excitatory synaptic drive from dorsal column pathways, such as the corticospinal tract, is enhanced. PMID:23320512

  10. Personal Adjustment Training for the Spinal Cord Injured

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roessler, Richard; And Others

    1976-01-01

    This article describes experiences with Personal Achievement Skills (PAS), a group counseling process in a spinal cord injury project, emphasizing training in communication and goal setting in the context of group process. Issues in conducting such training and providing comprehensive service to the spinal cord injured are discussed in detail.…

  11. Pediatric spinal cord injury: a review by organ system.

    PubMed

    Powell, Aaron; Davidson, Loren

    2015-02-01

    In this article, an overview is provided of pediatric spinal cord injury, organized by effects of this injury on various organ systems. Specific management differences between children and adults with spinal cord injury are highlighted. A detailed management approach is offered for particularly complex topics, such as spasticity and upper extremity reconstruction.

  12. Shriners Hospital Spinal Cord Injury Self Care Manual.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fox, Carol

    This manual is intended for young people with spinal cord injuries who are receiving rehabilitation services within the Spinal Cord Injury Unit at Shriners Hospital (San Francisco, California). An introduction describes the rehabilitation program, which includes family conferences, an individualized program, an independent living program,…

  13. Shriners Hospital Spinal Cord Injury Self Care Manual.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fox, Carol

    This manual is intended for young people with spinal cord injuries who are receiving rehabilitation services within the Spinal Cord Injury Unit at Shriners Hospital (San Francisco, California). An introduction describes the rehabilitation program, which includes family conferences, an individualized program, an independent living program,…

  14. Atrophy and Primary Somatosensory Cortical Reorganization after Unilateral Thoracic Spinal Cord Injury: A Longitudinal Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

    PubMed Central

    Manxiu, Ma; Zhao, Can; Xi, Yue; Yang, Zhao-Yang; Li, Xiao-Guang

    2013-01-01

    The effects of traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) on the changes in the central nervous system (CNS) over time may depend on the dynamic interaction between the structural integrity of the spinal cord and the capacity of the brain plasticity. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used in a longitudinal study on five rhesus monkeys to observe cerebral activation during upper limb somatosensory tasks in healthy animals and after unilateral thoracic SCI. The changes in the spinal cord diameters were measured, and the correlations among time after the lesion, structural changes in the spinal cord, and primary somatosensory cortex (S1) reorganization were also determined. After SCI, activation of the upper limb in S1 shifted to the region which generally dominates the lower limb, and the rostral spinal cord transverse diameter adjacent to the lesion exhibited obvious atrophy, which reflects the SCI-induced changes in the CNS. A significant correlation was found among the time after the lesion, the spinal cord atrophy, and the degree of contralateral S1 reorganization. The results indicate the structural changes in the spinal cord and the dynamic reorganization of the cerebral activation following early SCI stage, which may help to further understand the neural plasticity in the CNS. PMID:24490171

  15. Spinal cord injuries in Australian footballers.

    PubMed

    2003-07-01

    Acute spinal cord injury is a serious concern in football, particularly the rugby codes. This Australia-wide study covers the years 1986-1996 and data are compared with those from a previous identical study for 1960-1985. A retrospective review of 80 players with a documented acute spinal cord injury admitted to the six spinal cord injury units in Australia. Personal interview was carried out in 85% of the participants to determine the injury circumstances and the level of compensation. The severity of the neurological deficit and the functional recovery were determined (Frankel grade). The annual incidence of injuries for all codes combined did not change over the study period, but there was some decrease in rugby union and an increase in rugby league. In particular there was a significant decline in the incidence of adult rugby union injuries (P = 0.048). Scrum injuries in union have decreased subsequent to law changes in 1985, particularly in schoolboys, although ruck and maul injuries are increasing; 39% of scrum injuries occurred in players not in their regular position. Tackles were the most common cause of injury in league, with two-on-one tackles accounting for nearly half of these. Schoolboy injuries tended to mirror those in adults, but with a lower incidence. Over half of the players remain wheelchair-dependent, and 10% returned to near-normality. Six players (7.5%) died as a result of their injuries. The rugby codes must be made safer by appropriate preventative strategies and law changes. In particular, attention is necessary for tackle injuries in rugby league and players out of regular position in scrummage. Compensation for injured players is grossly inadequate. There is an urgent need to establish a national registry to analyse these injuries prospectively.

  16. Prognosis and Treatment of Spinal Cord Astrocytoma

    SciTech Connect

    Minehan, Kiernan J. Brown, Paul D.; Scheithauer, Bernd W.; Krauss, William E.; Wright, Michael P.

    2009-03-01

    Purpose: To identify the prognostic factors for spinal cord astrocytoma and determine the effects of surgery and radiotherapy on outcome. Methods and Materials: This retrospective study reviewed the cases of consecutive patients with spinal cord astrocytoma treated at Mayo Clinic Rochester between 1962 and 2005. Results: A total of 136 consecutive patients were identified. Of these 136 patients, 69 had pilocytic and 67 had infiltrative astrocytoma. The median follow-up for living patients was 8.2 years (range, 0.08-37.6), and the median survival for deceased patients was 1.15 years (range, 0.01-39.9). The extent of surgery included incisional biopsy only (59%), subtotal resection (25%), and gross total resection (16%). Patients with pilocytic tumors survived significantly longer than those with infiltrative astrocytomas (median overall survival, 39.9 vs. 1.85 years; p < 0.001). Patients who underwent resection had a worse, although nonsignificant, median survival than those who underwent biopsy only (pilocytic, 18.1 vs. 39.9 years, p = 0.07; infiltrative, 19 vs. 30 months, p = 0.14). Postoperative radiotherapy, delivered in 75% of cases, gave no significant survival benefit for those with pilocytic tumors (39.9 vs. 18.1 years, p = 0.33) but did for those with infiltrative astrocytomas (24 vs. 3 months; Wilcoxon p = 0.006). On multivariate analysis, pilocytic histologic type, diagnosis after 1984, longer symptom duration, younger age, minimal surgical extent, and postoperative radiotherapy predicted better outcome. Conclusion: The results of our study have shown that histologic type is the most important prognostic variable affecting the outcome of spinal cord astrocytomas. Surgical resection was associated with shorter survival and thus remains an unproven treatment. Postoperative radiotherapy significantly improved survival for patients with infiltrative astrocytomas but not for those with pilocytic tumors.

  17. Effect of lycopene on the blood-spinal cord barrier after spinal cord injury in mice.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qian; Wang, Jianbo; Gu, Zhengsong; Zhang, Qing; Zheng, Hong

    2016-09-05

    The current study aimed to investigate the effect of lycopene on the blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB) after spinal cord injury (SCI) in a mouse model. Lycopene inhibited lipid peroxidation and oxidative DNA damage as a highly efficient antioxidant and free radical scavenger. Lycopene (4 mg/kg/d) was administrated immediately following SCI. The permeability of the BSCB and water content in the spinal cord tissue were evaluated. Additionally, levels of expression of tight junction proteins and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) were determined with Western blotting. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analysis of spinal cord tissue homogenates was performed 48 h after SCI to evaluate the expression of inflammation-related cytokines. In addition, recovery of motor function was assessed 1 d, 2 d, 5 d, 10 d, and 15 d after SCI using the Basso Mouse Scale to score locomotion. Compared to the group with an untreated SCI, mice with an SCI treated with lycopene had significantly reduced spinal cord tissue water content and BSCB permeability. Furthermore, motor function of mice with an SCI was also greatly improved by lycopene administration. The expression of the proinflammatory factors TNF-α and NF-kB increased markedly 48 h after SCI, and their upregulation was significantly attenuated by lycopene treatment. The expression of molecules that protect tight junctions, zonula occluden-1 and claudin-5, was upregulated by lycopene treatment after SCI. Taken together, these results clearly indicate that lycopene attenuated SCI by promoting repair of the damaged BSCB, so lycopene is a novel and promising treatment for SCI in humans.

  18. Contrast enhanced ultrasound imaging for assessment of spinal cord blood flow in experimental spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Dubory, Arnaud; Laemmel, Elisabeth; Badner, Anna; Duranteau, Jacques; Vicaut, Eric; Court, Charles; Soubeyrand, Marc

    2015-05-07

    Reduced spinal cord blood flow (SCBF) (i.e., ischemia) plays a key role in traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) pathophysiology and is accordingly an important target for neuroprotective therapies. Although several techniques have been described to assess SCBF, they all have significant limitations. To overcome the latter, we propose the use of real-time contrast enhanced ultrasound imaging (CEU). Here we describe the application of this technique in a rat contusion model of SCI. A jugular catheter is first implanted for the repeated injection of contrast agent, a sodium chloride solution of sulphur hexafluoride encapsulated microbubbles. The spine is then stabilized with a custom-made 3D-frame and the spinal cord dura mater is exposed by a laminectomy at ThIX-ThXII. The ultrasound probe is then positioned at the posterior aspect of the dura mater (coated with ultrasound gel). To assess baseline SCBF, a single intravenous injection (400 µl) of contrast agent is applied to record its passage through the intact spinal cord microvasculature. A weight-drop device is subsequently used to generate a reproducible experimental contusion model of SCI. Contrast agent is re-injected 15 min following the injury to assess post-SCI SCBF changes. CEU allows for real time and in-vivo assessment of SCBF changes following SCI. In the uninjured animal, ultrasound imaging showed uneven blood flow along the intact spinal cord. Furthermore, 15 min post-SCI, there was critical ischemia at the level of the epicenter while SCBF remained preserved in the more remote intact areas. In the regions adjacent to the epicenter (both rostral and caudal), SCBF was significantly reduced. This corresponds to the previously described "ischemic penumbra zone". This tool is of major interest for assessing the effects of therapies aimed at limiting ischemia and the resulting tissue necrosis subsequent to SCI.

  19. Steroids, spinal cord and pain sensation.

    PubMed

    Patte-Mensah, Christine; Meyer, Laurence; Mensah-Nyagan, Ayikoe Guy

    2011-10-01

    During the whole life, the nervous system is continuously submitted to the actions of different categories of hormones, including steroids. Therefore, the interactions between hormonal compounds and neural tissues are subjected to intense investigations. While a majority of studies focus on the brain, the spinal cord (SC) has received little attention, although this structure is also an important part of the central nervous system, controlling motor and sensory functions. To point out the importance of interactions between hormones and the SC in the regulation of neurobiological activities, we recapitulated and discussed herein various key data, revealing that the pivotal role played by the SC in nociception and pain modulation, directly depends on the SC ability to metabolize and synthesize steroidal molecules. The paper suggests that future investigations aiming to develop effective strategies against chronic pain, must integrate regulatory effects exerted by hormonal steroids on the SC activity, as well as the actions of endogenous neurosteroids locally synthesized in spinal neural networks.

  20. Spinal cord injuries and orgasm: a review.

    PubMed

    Alexander, Marca; Rosen, Raymond C

    2008-01-01

    Definitions of orgasm remain varied, and physiologic markers have not been standardized or consistently applied. The occurrence of orgasm after spinal cord injury (SCI) has been documented for a number of years; however, in the recent past, the neurologic and autonomic correlates associated with orgasm after SCI have been investigated. In this article we review recent studies pertaining to the occurrence of orgasm after SCI. Laboratory-based assessments of orgasmic responsiveness of women and men with known levels and degrees of SCI have shown the effects of orgasm on peripheral autonomic responses and the effects of varying injury patterns on the ability to achieve orgasm. A spinal pattern generator has also been identified that mediates ejaculation in male rats and responses similar to orgasm in female rats. Taken together, these findings suggest that retraining reflexic orgasm through vibratory or other forms of neural stimulation may provide a means to remediate orgasmic dysfunction in persons with SCI.

  1. Early elective colostomy following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Michelle

    Elective colostomy is an accepted method of bowel management for patients who have had a spinal cord injury (SCI). Approximately 2.4% of patients with SCI have a colostomy, and traditionally it is performed as a last resort several years after injury, and only if bowel complications persist when all other methods have failed. This is despite evidence that patients find a colostomy easier to manage and frequently report wishing it had been performed earlier. It was noticed in the author's spinal unit that increasing numbers of patients were requesting colostomy formation during inpatient rehabilitation following SCI. No supporting literature was found for this; it appears to be an emerging and untested practice. This article explores colostomy formation as a method of bowel management in patients with SCI, considers the optimal time for colostomy formation after injury and examines issues for health professionals.

  2. Vascular Imaging Techniques of the Spinal Cord.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Maria Isabel; Barnaure, Isabelle; Gariani, Joanna; Boto, José; Pellaton, Alain; Dietemann, Jean-Louis; Kulcsar, Zsolt

    2017-04-01

    The various imaging techniques used to depict vascular lesions of the spinal cord are described in this article with particular emphasis on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), vascular sequences, and advantages of high-field MRI. Technical vascular protocols are discussed in computed tomography, MRI, and conventional angiography. The diverse magnetic resonance angiography protocols are presented as well as their findings, specificities, and pitfalls. A review of the vascular anatomy and the most common pathologies analyzed by magnetic resonance angiography and conventional angiography is described.

  3. Natural Polyphenols and Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Khalatbary, Ali Reza

    2014-01-01

    Polyphenols have been shown to have some of the neuroprotective effects against neurodegenerative diseases. These effects are attributed to a variety of biological activities, including free radical scavenging/antioxidant and anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic activities. In this regard, many efforts have been made to study the effects of various well-known dietary polyphenols on spinal cord injury (SCI) and to explore the mechanisms behind the neuroprotective effects. The aim of this paper is to present the mechanisms of neuroprotection of natural polyphenols used in animal models of SCI. PMID:24842137

  4. Search and Neutralize Factors (Cspgs) that Induce Decline in Transmission to Motoneurons from Spared Fibers after Chronic Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-04-01

    subcutaneous injections of antibiotic (Baytril, 5 mg/kg) and 5 ml sterile-lactated Ringer`s solution. Injections of antibiotic, analgesic , and Ringer`s...spinal cord: role of NMDA receptors . Journal of Neurophysiology, 107, 3027-3039, 2012. 4. Arvanian V. Role of Neurotrophins in Spinal Plasticity

  5. Agreement in Metastatic Spinal Cord Compression.

    PubMed

    Arana, Estanislao; Kovacs, Francisco M; Royuela, Ana; Asenjo, Beatriz; Pérez-Ramírez, Úrsula; Zamora, Javier

    2016-01-01

    Metastatic epidural spinal cord compression (ESCC) is a devastating medical emergency. The purpose of this study was to determine the reliability of the 6-point ESCC scoring system and the identification of the spinal level presenting ESCC. Clinical data and imaging from 90 patients with biopsy-proven spinal metastases were provided to 83 specialists from 44 hospitals. The spinal levels presenting metastases and the ESCC scores for each case were calculated twice by each clinician, with a minimum of 6 weeks' interval. Clinicians were blinded to assessments made by other specialists and their own previous assessment. Fleiss kappa (κ) statistic was used to assess intraobserver and interobserver agreement. Subgroup analyses were performed according to clinicians' specialty (medical oncology, neurosurgery, radiology, orthopedic surgery, and radiation oncology), years of experience, and type of hospital. Intraobserver and interobserver agreement on the location of ESCC was substantial (κ>0.61). Intraobserver agreement on the ESCC score was "excellent" (κ=0.82), whereas interobserver agreement was substantial (κ=0.64). Overall agreement with the tumor board classification was substantial (κ=0.71). Results were similar across specialties, years of experience and hospital category. The ESCC score can help improve communication among clinicians involved in oncology care. Copyright © 2016 by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

  6. Motoneuron differentiation of immortalized human spinal cord cell lines.

    PubMed

    Li, R; Thode, S; Zhou, J; Richard, N; Pardinas, J; Rao, M S; Sah, D W

    2000-02-01

    Human motoneuron cell lines will be valuable tools for spinal cord research and drug discovery. To create such cell lines, we immortalized NCAM(+)/neurofilament(+) precursors from human embryonic spinal cord with a tetracycline repressible v-myc oncogene. Clonal NCAM(+)/neurofilament(+) cell lines differentiated exclusively into neurons within 1 week. These neurons displayed extensive processes, exhibited immunoreactivity for mature neuron-specific markers such as tau and synaptophysin, and fired action potentials upon current injection. Moreover, a clonal precursor cell line gave rise to multiple types of spinal cord neurons, including ChAT(+)/Lhx3(+)/Lhx4(+) motoneurons and GABA(+) interneurons. These neuronal restricted precursor cell lines will expedite the elucidation of molecular mechanisms that regulate the differentiation, maturation and survival of specific subsets of spinal cord neurons, and the identification and validation of novel drug targets for motoneuron diseases and spinal cord injury.

  7. Epidemiologic change of patients with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Shin, Ji Cheol; Kim, Dae Hyun; Yu, Su Jin; Yang, Hea Eun; Yoon, Seo Yeon

    2013-02-01

    To evaluate the epidemiologic change of patients with spinal cord injury who were admitted to a Rehabilitation Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, during 1987-1996 and 2004-2008. Medical records of 629 patients with spinal cord injury admitted to the Rehabilitation Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, from 2004 to 2008 were collected and reviewed retrospectively. The male-to-female ratio decreased to 2.86:1, the mean age at injury increased, nontraumatic etiology increased, traffic accident remained to be the most common in traumatic spinal cord injury, and falling increased significantly. Tumor was the most common etiology in nontraumatic spinal cord injury, tetraplegia and incomplete injuries occurred more than paraplegia and complete injuries, indwelling catheter was the most common voiding method, and the duration of hospitalization decreased. Many trends changed in epidemiology of spinal cord injury.

  8. Neonatal spinal cord injury after an uncomplicated vaginal delivery.

    PubMed

    Goetz, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Neonatal spinal cord injury has been reported after traumatic births and as a consequence of underlying lesions in the spinal cord. This report describes an infant who was born with bilateral flaccid paralysis of the upper extremities after an atraumatic, noninstrumented vaginal delivery. The infant was otherwise neurologically intact. The infant was initially thought to exhibit bilateral brachial plexus injury. However, magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated an upper cervical spinal cord hemorrhage, with no underlying lesions of the spinal cord or surrounding vasculature. This case highlights the importance of thoroughly evaluating any neurologic deficit in the newborn, and suggests that normal mechanical forces of labor and delivery may be sufficient to cause damage to the newborn spinal cord.

  9. Spinal cord injury following operative shoulder intervention: A case report

    PubMed Central

    Cleveland, Christine; Walker, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Context Cervical myelopathy is a spinal cord dysfunction that results from extrinsic compression of the spinal cord, its blood supply, or both. It is the most common cause of spinal cord dysfunction in patients greater than 55 years of age. Findings: A 57-year-old male with right shoulder septic arthritis underwent surgical debridement of his right shoulder and sustained a spinal cord injury intraoperatively. The most likely etiology is damage to the cervical spinal cord during difficult intubation requiring multiple attempts in this patient with underlying asymptomatic severe cervical stenosis. Conclusion Although it is not feasible to perform imaging studies on all patients undergoing intubation for surgery, this patient's outcome would suggest consideration of inclusion of additional pre-surgical screening examination techniques, such as testing for a positive Hoffman's reflex, is appropriate to detect asymptomatic patients who may have underlying cervical stenosis. PMID:24679185

  10. [Lampreys as an animal model in regeneration studies after spinal cord injury].

    PubMed

    Rodicio, María Celina; Barreiro-Iglesias, Antón

    2012-08-01

    Spinal cord injuries are an important sanitary and economical problem for the society. In mammals, including humans, a traumatic injury to the spinal cord leads to a loss of motor and sensorial function, which is irreversible due to the low regenerative ability of the central nervous system. In contrast to mammals, functional recovery occurs spontaneously after a complete spinal cord transection in lampreys. Functional recovery occurs because in these animals about 50% of the reticulospinal axons regenerate after injury and also because of the occurrence of processes of reorganization and plasticity of the spinal circuits. In this review, we first analyze the characteristics and regeneration ability of lampreys as compared to mammals. Then, we compile the knowledge about the process of recovery after a spinal cord injury acquired in studies using the lampreys as animal model and finally we provide some general perspectives about the molecular processes implicated in regeneration that can be investigated in a very advantageous way in this animal model and which knowledge could allow to develop new therapies for patients suffering spinal cord injury.

  11. Use of wavelet energy for spinal cord vibration analysis during spinal surgery.

    PubMed

    Dai, Yu; Zhang, Jianxun; Xue, Yuan

    2013-12-01

    An online non-contact measurement system using a laser displacement sensor was developed for obtaining the vibration amplitude of spinal cord and hard tissue. The discrete wavelet transform was used to extract the distinctive features of tissue vibration signals. The spinal cord and spinal cancellous bone can be discriminated by the comparison of wavelet energy over a characteristic scale. We also derived the integro-differential equation of motion to describe the spinal cord vibration excited by the motion of bone. Experimental results show that the method works well in identifying spinal cord and bone. However, available viscoelastic constants cannot describe the high-frequency features of spinal cord. The examined issue of tissue vibration due to the operation power device is a significant problem. The proposed method can be used by a surgery robot, and then spinal surgery may greatly benefit from the enhanced safety of robotics. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. Extra and Intramedullary Anaplastic Ependymoma in Thoracic Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Byung Soo; Kwak, Kyung-Woo; Choi, Jun Huck

    2013-01-01

    Spinal ependymoma occupies 40-60% of primary spinal cord tumors and has a feature of intramedullary tumor. The tumor most commonly arises from the central canal of the spinal cord, the conus medullaris or the filum terminale and its pathological features are usually benign. Unlike above characteristics, intra and extramedullary ependymomas are reported very rarely and have wide variety of histological features. We present a rare case of spinal anaplastic ependymoma with an accompanied exophytic lesions extramedullary as well. The tumor was poorly delineated between a spinal cord and the extramedullary components in operative view. After we had confirmed the frozen biopsy as anaplastic ependymoma, the remnant mass embedded in the spinal cord was remained because of its unclear resection margin and the risk of neurological deterioration. She underwent radiotherapy with 50.4 Gy, and there were newly developed mass lesions at the lumbosacral region on the MRI, 14 months postoperatively. PMID:24757483

  13. Lizard tail spinal cord: a new experimental model of spinal cord injury without limb paralysis.

    PubMed

    Szarek, Dariusz; Marycz, Krzysztof; Lis, Anna; Zawada, Zbigniew; Tabakow, Paweł; Laska, Jadwiga; Jarmundowicz, Włodzimierz

    2016-04-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a well-known devastating lesion that sadly is very resistant to all treatment attempts. This fact has stimulated the exploration of multiple regenerative strategies that are examined at both the basic and clinical level. For laboratory research, differentin vivomodels are used, but each has many important limitations. The main limitation of these models is the high level of animal suffering related to the inflicted neurologic injury. It has caused a growing tendency to limit the injury, but this, in turn, produces incomplete SCI models and uncertainties in the neuroregeneration interpretation. To overcome such limitations, a new experimental SCI model is proposed. Geckos have been extensively examined as a potential animal model of SCI. Their spinal cord extends into the tail and can be transected without causing the typical neurologic consequences observed in rat models. In this study, we compared the gecko tail SCI model with the rat model of thoracic SCI. Anatomic and histologic analyses showed comparability between the gecko and rat in diameter of spinal canal and spinal cord, as well as applicability of multiple staining techniques (hematoxylin and eosin, immunostaining, and scanning and transmission electron microscopy). We tested the suitability ofin vivostudy with 3 prototype implants for the reconstruction of SCI: a multichannel sponge, a multilaminar tube, and a gel cylinder. These were compared with a spinal cord excision (control). A 20-wk observation revealed no adverse effects of SCI on the animals' well-being. The animals were easily housed and observed. Histologic analysis showed growth of nervous tissue elements on implant surface and implant cellular colonization. The study showed that the gecko SCI model can be used as a primary model for the assessment of SCI treatment methods. It provides a platform for testing multiple solutions with limited animal suffering before performing tests on mammals. Detailed results of

  14. Assessment of in vivo spinal cord conduction velocity in rats in an experimental model of ischemic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Basoglu, H; Kurtoglu, T; Cetin, N K; Bilgin, M D; Kiylioglu, N

    2013-08-01

    Experimental laboratory investigation of spinal cord conductivity alterations in a rat model of ischemic spinal cord injury (SCI). To observe the epidural spinal cord stimulation-induced electromyography responses, and to investigate the possible alterations of spinal cord conduction velocity (SCCV) and compound muscle action potentials (CMAPs) after ischemic SCI in rats. Adnan Menderes University, Institute of Health Science, Aydin, Turkey. SCI was induced by transient occlusion of the abdominal aorta in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Spinal cord histopathology was examined to determine neuronal damage and Tarlov scale was used to grade locomotor functions. Epidural electrical stimulation of spinal cord was performed by monopolar needle electrodes sequentially at L1-L2 and L5-L6 levels, and CMAPs were recorded from the left gastrocnemius muscle by surface electrodes. Amplitudes and durations of CMAPs were evaluated and SCCVs were calculated by analyzing the latency difference of CMAPs. Ischemia-induced SCI resulted in significant reduction of Tarlov scores and a significant decline in number of viable neurons. Similarly, a significant decrement was observed in SCCV following spinal cord ischemia. This study demonstrated that measurement of SCCV via epidural electrical stimulation is possible and displays a significant decline after spinal cord ischemia in rats. We suggest that this method can be beneficial to quantify neuronal damage after experimental ischemic SCI.

  15. Intranasal nerve growth factor bypasses the blood-brain barrier and affects spinal cord neurons in spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Aloe, Luigi; Bianchi, Patrizia; De Bellis, Alberto; Soligo, Marzia; Rocco, Maria Luisa

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this work was to investigate whether, by intranasal administration, the nerve growth factor bypasses the blood-brain barrier and turns over the spinal cord neurons and if such therapeutic approach could be of value in the treatment of spinal cord injury. Adult Sprague-Dawley rats with intact and injured spinal cord received daily intranasal nerve growth factor administration in both nostrils for 1 day or for 3 consecutive weeks. We found an increased content of nerve growth factor and enhanced expression of nerve growth factor receptor in the spinal cord 24 hours after a single intranasal administration of nerve growth factor in healthy rats, while daily treatment for 3 weeks in a model of spinal cord injury improved the deficits in locomotor behaviour and increased spinal content of both nerve growth factor and nerve growth factor receptors. These outcomes suggest that the intranasal nerve growth factor bypasses blood-brain barrier and affects spinal cord neurons in spinal cord injury. They also suggest exploiting the possible therapeutic role of intranasally delivered nerve growth factor for the neuroprotection of damaged spinal nerve cells. PMID:25206755

  16. Magnetic resonance imaging in the diagnosis of spinal cord diseases.

    PubMed Central

    Aichner, F; Poewe, W; Rogalsky, W; Wallnöfer, K; Willeit, J; Gerstenbrand, F

    1985-01-01

    Experience with magnetic resonance imaging in 22 patients with diseases of the spinal cord is reported. Important additional diagnostic information as compared to conventional neuroradiological techniques (myelography, spinal CT) was gained especially in cases of hydrosyringomyelia, intraspinal tumour and multiple sclerosis. It is suggested that magnetic resonance imaging may become the method of choice in the diagnosis of structural spinal cord diseases. Images PMID:3936900

  17. Recovery of spinal cord function induced by direct current stimulation of the injured rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Wallace, M C; Tator, C H; Piper, I

    1987-06-01

    Direct current stimulation has been shown by others to enhance the regeneration of several types of tissues, including nervous tissue in some species. The purpose of the present experiment was to assess the value of direct current stimulation for enhancing the recovery of spinal cord function after clip compression injury of the rat spinal cord. Twenty Wistar rats underwent a 1-minute, 50-g clip compression injury at T-1, after which electrodes were placed epidurally with the anode proximal and the cathode distal to the injury site. These electrodes were attached to a stimulator implanted subcutaneously. Ten animals received stimulators that produced a constant current of 14 microA, and the remainder received stimulators with no electrical output and served as controls. Assignment of stimulators was random, and the treatment group was not identified until sacrifice. Neurological function was tested weekly for 15 weeks by the inclined plane technique, after which the animals were killed and the injured cords were examined for histological evidence of regeneration. The mean inclined plane result for the treatment group (39 +/- 5 degrees) was significantly better than that for the control group (31 +/- 6 degrees) (P less than 0.02), although there was no significant difference in histological findings between the two groups. Thus, direct current stimulation of the injured mammalian spinal cord produced improvement in neurological function and warrants further investigation.

  18. Targeting the blood-spinal cord barrier: A therapeutic approach to spinal cord protection against ischemia-reperfusion injury.

    PubMed

    Hu, Ji; Yu, Qijing; Xie, Lijie; Zhu, Hongfei

    2016-08-01

    One of the principal functions of physical barriers between the blood and central nervous system protects system (i.e., blood brain barrier and blood-spinal cord barrier) is the protection from toxic and pathogenic agents in the blood. Disruption of blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB) plays a key role in spinal cord ischemia-reperfusion injury (SCIRI). Following SCIRI, the permeability of the BSCB increases. Maintaining the integrity of the BSCB alleviates the spinal cord injury after spinal cord ischemia. This review summarizes current knowledge of the structure and function of the BSCB and its changes following SCIRI, as well as the prevention and cure of SCIRI and the role of the BSCB.

  19. Neurogenic bladder in spinal cord injury patients

    PubMed Central

    Taweel, Waleed Al; Seyam, Raouf

    2015-01-01

    Neurogenic bladder dysfunction due to spinal cord injury poses a significant threat to the well-being of patients. Incontinence, renal impairment, urinary tract infection, stones, and poor quality of life are some complications of this condition. The majority of patients will require management to ensure low pressure reservoir function of the bladder, complete emptying, and dryness. Management typically begins with anticholinergic medications and clean intermittent catheterization. Patients who fail this treatment because of inefficacy or intolerability are candidates for a spectrum of more invasive procedures. Endoscopic managements to relieve the bladder outlet resistance include sphincterotomy, botulinum toxin injection, and stent insertion. In contrast, patients with incompetent sphincters are candidates for transobturator tape insertion, sling surgery, or artificial sphincter implantation. Coordinated bladder emptying is possible with neuromodulation in selected patients. Bladder augmentation, usually with an intestinal segment, and urinary diversion are the last resort. Tissue engineering is promising in experimental settings; however, its role in clinical bladder management is still evolving. In this review, we summarize the current literature pertaining to the pathology and management of neurogenic bladder dysfunction in patients with spinal cord injury. PMID:26090342

  20. Fibronectin Matrix Assembly after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Yunjiao; Soderblom, Cynthia; Trojanowsky, Michelle; Lee, Do-Hun

    2015-01-01

    Abstract After spinal cord injury (SCI), a fibrotic scar forms at the injury site that is best characterized by the accumulation of perivascular fibroblasts and deposition of the extracellular matrix protein fibronectin. While fibronectin is a growth-permissive substrate for axons, the fibrotic scar is inhibitory to axon regeneration. The mechanism behind how fibronectin contributes to the inhibitory environment and how the fibronectin matrix is assembled in the fibrotic scar is unknown. By deleting fibronectin in myeloid cells, we demonstrate that fibroblasts are most likely the major source of fibronectin in the fibrotic scar. In addition, we demonstrate that fibronectin is initially present in a soluble form and is assembled into a matrix at 7 d post-SCI. Assembly of the fibronectin matrix may be mediated by the canonical fibronectin receptor, integrin α5β1, which is primarily expressed by activated macrophages/microglia in the fibrotic scar. Despite the pronounced cavitation after rat SCI, fibrotic scar also is observed in a rat SCI model, which is considered to be more similar to human pathology. Taken together, our study provides insight into the mechanism of fibrotic scar formation after spinal cord injury. PMID:25492623

  1. Emerging Role of Spinal Cord TRPV1 in Pain Exacerbation.

    PubMed

    Choi, Seung-In; Lim, Ji Yeon; Yoo, Sungjae; Kim, Hyun; Hwang, Sun Wook

    2016-01-01

    TRPV1 is well known as a sensor ion channel that transduces a potentially harmful environment into electrical depolarization of the peripheral terminal of the nociceptive primary afferents. Although TRPV1 is also expressed in central regions of the nervous system, its roles in the area remain unclear. A series of recent reports on the spinal cord synapses have provided evidence that TRPV1 plays an important role in synaptic transmission in the pain pathway. Particularly, in pathologic pain states, TRPV1 in the central terminal of sensory neurons and interneurons is suggested to commonly contribute to pain exacerbation. These observations may lead to insights regarding novel synaptic mechanisms revealing veiled roles of spinal cord TRPV1 and may offer another opportunity to modulate pathological pain by controlling TRPV1. In this review, we introduce historical perspectives of this view and details of the recent promising results. We also focus on extended issues and unsolved problems to fully understand the role of TRPV1 in pathological pain. Together with recent findings, further efforts for fine analysis of TRPV1's plastic roles in pain synapses at different levels in the central nervous system will promote a better understanding of pathologic pain mechanisms and assist in developing novel analgesic strategies.

  2. Emerging Role of Spinal Cord TRPV1 in Pain Exacerbation

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Seung-In; Lim, Ji Yeon; Yoo, Sungjae; Kim, Hyun; Hwang, Sun Wook

    2016-01-01

    TRPV1 is well known as a sensor ion channel that transduces a potentially harmful environment into electrical depolarization of the peripheral terminal of the nociceptive primary afferents. Although TRPV1 is also expressed in central regions of the nervous system, its roles in the area remain unclear. A series of recent reports on the spinal cord synapses have provided evidence that TRPV1 plays an important role in synaptic transmission in the pain pathway. Particularly, in pathologic pain states, TRPV1 in the central terminal of sensory neurons and interneurons is suggested to commonly contribute to pain exacerbation. These observations may lead to insights regarding novel synaptic mechanisms revealing veiled roles of spinal cord TRPV1 and may offer another opportunity to modulate pathological pain by controlling TRPV1. In this review, we introduce historical perspectives of this view and details of the recent promising results. We also focus on extended issues and unsolved problems to fully understand the role of TRPV1 in pathological pain. Together with recent findings, further efforts for fine analysis of TRPV1's plastic roles in pain synapses at different levels in the central nervous system will promote a better understanding of pathologic pain mechanisms and assist in developing novel analgesic strategies. PMID:26885404

  3. Promoting Gait Recovery and Limiting Neuropathic Pain After Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Mercier, Catherine; Roosink, Meyke; Bouffard, Jason; Bouyer, Laurent J

    2017-04-01

    Most persons living with a spinal cord injury experience neuropathic pain in the months following their lesion, at the moment where they receive intensive gait rehabilitation. Based on studies using animal models, it has been proposed that central sensitization in nociceptive pathways (maladaptive plasticity) and plasticity related to motor learning (adaptive plasticity) share common neural mechanisms and compete with each other. This article aims to address the discrepancy between the growing body of basic science literature supporting this hypothesis and the general belief in rehabilitation research that pain and gait rehabilitation represent two independent problems. First, the main findings from basic research showing interactions between nociception and learning in the spinal cord will be summarized, focusing both on evidence demonstrating the impact of nociception on motor learning and of motor learning on central sensitization. Then, the generalizability of these findings in animal models to humans will be discussed. Finally, the way potential interactions between nociception and motor learning are currently taken into account in clinical research in patients with spinal cord injury will be presented. To conclude, recommendations will be proposed to better integrate findings from basic research into future clinical research in persons with spinal cord injury.

  4. 21 CFR 882.5880 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief... Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief is a device that is used to stimulate electrically a patient's spinal cord to...

  5. 21 CFR 882.5880 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief... Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief is a device that is used to stimulate electrically a patient's spinal cord to...

  6. 21 CFR 882.5880 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief... Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief is a device that is used to stimulate electrically a patient's spinal cord to...

  7. 21 CFR 882.5880 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief... Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief is a device that is used to stimulate electrically a patient's spinal cord to...

  8. 21 CFR 882.5880 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief... Implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal cord stimulator for pain relief is a device that is used to stimulate electrically a patient's spinal cord to...

  9. Anti-NGF Local Therapy for Autonomic Dysreflexia in Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    pathophysiological basis of neurogenic detrusor overactivity with spinal cord injury (SCI). However, the... bladder distention after SCI. Using adult female rats with chronic spinal cord injury induced by Th4 spinal cord transection, we will investigate: (1...autonomic dysreflexia during bladder distention in rats with spinal cord injury . 111th Annual Meeting AUA, Abstract No. 34, San Diego, May 4-8, 2013.

  10. The thoracic anterior spinal cord adhesion syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, T R; Dineen, R; White, B; Jaspan, T

    2012-01-01

    Objectives This study included a series of middle-aged male and female patients who presented with chronic anterior hemicord dysfunction progressing to paraplegia. Imaging of anterior thoracic cord displacement by either a dural adhesion or a dural defect with associated cord herniation is presented. Methods This is a retrospective review of cases referred to a tertiary neuroscience centre over a 19-year period. Imaging series were classified by two experienced neuroradiologists against several criteria and correlated with clinical examination and/or findings at surgery. Results 16 cases were available for full review. Nine were considered to represent adhesions (four confirmed surgically) and four to represent true herniation (three confirmed surgically). In the three remaining cases the diagnosis was radiologically uncertain. Conclusion The authors propose “thoracic anterior spinal cord adhesion syndrome” as a novel term to describe this patient cohort and suggest appropriate clinicoradiological features for diagnosis. Several possible aetiologies are also suggested, with disc rupture and inflammation followed by disc resorption and dural pocket formation being a possible mechanism predisposing to herniation at the extreme end of a clinicopathological spectrum. PMID:22665931

  11. Revisiting the segmental organization of the human spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Leijnse, J N; D'Herde, K

    2016-09-01

    In classic anatomic atlases, the spinal cord is standardly represented in its anatomical form with symmetrically emerging anterior and posterior roots, which at the level of the intervertebral foramen combine into the spinal nerves. The parts of the cord delimited by the boundaries of the roots are called segments or myelomeres. Associated with their regular repetitive appearance is the notion that the cord is segmentally organized. This segmental view is reinforced by clinical practice. Spinal cord roots innervate specific body parts. The level of cord trauma is diagnosed by the de-innervation symptoms of these parts. However, systemically, the case for a segmentally organized cord is not so clear. To date, developmental and genetic research points to a regionally rather than a segmentally organized cord. In the present study, to what degree the fila radicularia are segmentally implanted along the cord was investigated. The research hypothesis was that if the fila radicularia were non-segmentally implanted at the cord surface, it would be unlikely that the internal neuron stratum would be segmented. The visual segmented aspect of the myelomeres would then be the consequence of the necessary bundling of axons towards the vertebral foramen as the only exits of the vertebral canal, rather than of an underlying segment organization of the cord itself. To investigate the research hypothesis, the fila radicularia in the cervical-upper thoracic part of five spinal cords were detached from their spinal nerves and dissected in detail. The principal research question was if the fila radicularia are separated from their spinal nerves and dissected from their connective tissues up to the cord, would it be possible to reconstruct the original spinal segments from the morphology and interspaces of the fila? The dissections revealed that the anterior fila radicularia emerge from the cord at regular regionally modulated interspaces without systematic segmental delineations. The

  12. Functional Synaptic Integration of Forebrain GABAergic Precursors into the Adult Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Etlin, Alex; Bráz, Joao M.; Kuhn, Julia A.; Wang, Xidao; Hamel, Katherine A.; Llewellyn-Smith, Ida J.

    2016-01-01

    , whether transplanted before or after nerve injury, develop into inhibitory neurons, are activated by nociceptive primary afferents, and form GABA-A-mediated inhibitory synapses with the host. Unexpectedly, cells transplanted into naive spinal cord prevented the development of nerve-injury-induced mechanical hypersensitivity. These results illustrate the remarkable plasticity of adult spinal cord and the potential of cell-based therapies against neuropathic pain. PMID:27852772

  13. Distribution of Spinal Sensitization Evoked by Inflammatory Pain Using Local Spinal Cord Glucose Utilization Combined with (3) H-Phorbol 12,13-Dibutyrate Binding in Rats.

    PubMed

    Seiko, Yasuda; Kozo, Ishikawa; Yoshihiro, Matsumoto; Toru, Ariyoshi; Hironori, Sasaki; Yuika, Ida; Yasutake, Iwanaga; Hae-Kyu, Kim; Osamu, Nakanishi; Toshizo, Ishikawa

    2013-01-01

    Aims. Hyperalgesia following tissue injury is induced by plasticity in neurotransmission. Few investigators have considered the ascending input which activates the superficial of spinal cord. The aim was to examine neurotransmission and nociceptive processing in the spinal cord after mustard-oil (MO) injection. Both in vitro and in vivo autoradiographs were employed for neuronal activity and transmission in discrete spinal cord regions using the (14)C-2-deoxyglucose method and (3)H-phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate ((3)H-PDBu) binding sites. Methods. To quantify the hyperalgesia evoked by MO, the flinching was counted for 60 min after MO (20%, 50 μL) injection in Wistar rats. Simultaneous determination of (14)C-2-deoxyglucose and (3)H-PDBu binding was used for a direct observation of neuronal/metabolic changes and intracellular signaling in the spinal cord. Results. MO injection evoked an increase in flinching for 60 min. LSCGU significantly increased in the Rexed I-II with (3)H-PDBu binding in the ipsilateral side of spinal cord. Discussion. We clearly demonstrated that the hyperalgesia is primarily relevant to increased neuronal activation with PKC activation in the Rexed I-II of the spinal cord. In addition, functional changes such as "neuronal plasticity" may result in increased neuronal excitability and a central sensitization.

  14. TNF-α Differentially Regulates Synaptic Plasticity in the Hippocampus and Spinal Cord by Microglia-Dependent Mechanisms after Peripheral Nerve Injury.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yong; Zhou, Li-Jun; Wang, Jun; Li, Dai; Ren, Wen-Jie; Peng, Jiyun; Wei, Xiao; Xu, Ting; Xin, Wen-Jun; Pang, Rui-Ping; Li, Yong-Yong; Qin, Zhi-Hai; Murugan, Madhuvika; Mattson, Mark P; Wu, Long-Jun; Liu, Xian-Guo

    2017-01-25

    Clinical studies show that chronic pain is accompanied by memory deficits and reduction in hippocampal volume. Experimental studies show that spared nerve injury (SNI) of the sciatic nerve induces long-term potentiation (LTP) at C-fiber synapses in spinal dorsal horn, but impairs LTP in the hippocampus. The opposite changes may contribute to neuropathic pain and memory deficits, respectively. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the functional synaptic changes are unclear. Here, we show that the dendrite lengths and spine densities are reduced significantly in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, but increased in spinal neurokinin-1-positive neurons in mice after SNI, indicating that the excitatory synaptic connectivity is reduced in hippocampus but enhanced in spinal dorsal horn in this neuropathic pain model. Mechanistically, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) is upregulated in bilateral hippocampus and in ipsilateral spinal dorsal horn, whereas brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is decreased in the hippocampus but increased in the ipsilateral spinal dorsal horn after SNI. Importantly, the SNI-induced opposite changes in synaptic connectivity and BDNF expression are prevented by genetic deletion of TNF receptor 1 in vivo and are mimicked by TNF-α in cultured slices. Furthermore, SNI activated microglia in both spinal dorsal horn and hippocampus; pharmacological inhibition or genetic ablation of microglia prevented the region-dependent synaptic changes, neuropathic pain, and memory deficits induced by SNI. The data suggest that neuropathic pain involves different structural synaptic alterations in spinal and hippocampal neurons that are mediated by overproduction of TNF-α and microglial activation and may underlie chronic pain and memory deficits.

  15. GABA and Central Neuropathic Pain following Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Gwak, Young S.; Hulsebosch, Claire E.

    2012-01-01

    Spinal cord injury induces maladaptive synaptic transmission in the somatosensory system that results in chronic central neuropathic pain. Recent literature suggests that glial-neuronal interactions are important modulators in synaptic transmission following spinal cord injury. Neuronal hyperexcitability is one of the predominant phenomenon caused by maladaptive synaptic transmission via altered glial-neuronal interactions after spinal cord injury. In the somatosensory system, spinal inhibitory neurons counter balance the enhanced synaptic transmission from peripheral input. For a decade, the literature suggests that hypofunction of GABAergic inhibitory tone is an important factor in the enhanced synaptic transmission that often results in neuronal hyperexcitability in dorsal horn neurons following spinal cord injury. Neurons and glial cells synergistically control intracellular chloride ion gradients via modulation of chloride transporters, extracellular glutamate and GABA concentrations via uptake mechanisms. Thus, the intracellular “GABA-glutamate-glutamine cycle” is maintained for normal physiological homeostasis. However, hyperexcitable neurons and glial activation after spinal cord injury disrupts the balance of chloride ions, glutamate and GABA distribution in the spinal dorsal horn and results in chronic neuropathic pain. In this review, we address spinal cord injury induced mechanisms in hypofunction of GABAergic tone that results in chronic central neuropathic pain. PMID:21216257

  16. Co-Ultramicronized Palmitoylethanolamide/Luteolin Promotes Neuronal Regeneration after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Crupi, Rosalia; Impellizzeri, Daniela; Bruschetta, Giuseppe; Cordaro, Marika; Paterniti, Irene; Siracusa, Rosalba; Cuzzocrea, Salvatore; Esposito, Emanuela

    2016-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) stimulates activation of astrocytes and infiltration of immune cells at the lesion site; however, the mechanism that promotes the birth of new neurons is still under debate. Neuronal regeneration is restricted after spinal cord injury, but can be stimulated by experimental intervention. Previously we demonstrated that treatment co-ultramicronized palmitoylethanolamide and luteolin, namely co-ultraPEALut, reduced inflammation. The present study was designed to explore the neuroregenerative properties of co-ultraPEALut in an estabished murine model of SCI. A vascular clip was applied to the spinal cord dura at T5–T8 to provoke injury. Mice were treated with co-ultraPEALut (1 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) daily for 72 h after SCI. Co-ultraPEALut increased the numbers of both bromodeoxyuridine-positive nuclei and doublecortin-immunoreactive cells in the spinal cord of injured mice. To correlate neuronal development with synaptic plasticity a Golgi method was employed to analyze dendritic spine density. Co-ultraPEALut administration stimulated expression of the neurotrophic factors brain-derived neurotrophic factor, glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor, nerve growth factor, and neurotrophin-3. These findings show a prominent effect of co-ultraPEALut administration in the management of survival and differentiation of new neurons and spine maturation, and may represent a therapeutic treatment for spinal cord and other traumatic diseases. PMID:27014061

  17. Cooling athletes with a spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Griggs, Katy E; Price, Michael J; Goosey-Tolfrey, Victoria L

    2015-01-01

    Cooling strategies that help prevent a reduction in exercise capacity whilst exercising in the heat have received considerable research interest over the past 3 decades, especially in the lead up to a relatively hot Olympic and Paralympic Games. Progressing into the next Olympic/Paralympic cycle, the host, Rio de Janeiro, could again present an environmental challenge for competing athletes. Despite the interest and vast array of research into cooling strategies for the able-bodied athlete, less is known regarding the application of these cooling strategies in the thermoregulatory impaired spinal cord injured (SCI) athletic population. Individuals with a spinal cord injury (SCI) have a reduced afferent input to the thermoregulatory centre and a loss of both sweating capacity and vasomotor control below the level of the spinal cord lesion. The magnitude of this thermoregulatory impairment is proportional to the level of the lesion. For instance, individuals with high-level lesions (tetraplegia) are at a greater risk of heat illness than individuals with lower-level lesions (paraplegia) at a given exercise intensity. Therefore, cooling strategies may be highly beneficial in this population group, even in moderate ambient conditions (~21 °C). This review was undertaken to examine the scientific literature that addresses the application of cooling strategies in individuals with an SCI. Each method is discussed in regards to the practical issues associated with the method and the potential underlying mechanism. For instance, site-specific cooling would be more suitable for an athlete with an SCI than whole body water immersion, due to the practical difficulties of administering this method in this population group. From the studies reviewed, wearing an ice vest during intermittent sprint exercise has been shown to decrease thermal strain and improve performance. These garments have also been shown to be effective during exercise in the able-bodied. Drawing on

  18. Contribution of 5-HT2A receptors on diaphragmatic recovery after chronic cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kun-Ze; Gonzalez-Rothi, Elisa J

    2017-10-01

    Unilateral C2 spinal cord hemisection (C2Hx) interrupts bulbospinal respiratory pathways innervating ipsilateral phrenic motoneurons, resulting in cessation of ipsilateral diaphragm motor output. Plasticity within the spinal neural circuitry controlling the diaphragm can induce partial recovery of phrenic bursting which correlates with the time-dependent return of spinal serotonin (5-HT) immunoreactivity in the vicinity of phrenic motoneurons. The 5-HT2A receptor subtype is present on phrenic motoneurons and its expression is up-regulated after cervical spinal cord injury; however the functional role of these receptors following injury has not been clearly defined. The present study evaluated the functional role of 5-HT2A receptors by testing the hypothesis that pharmacologic blockade would attenuate diaphragm activity in rats with chronic cervical spinal cord injury. Bilateral diaphragm electromyography (EMG) was performed in vagal-intact and spontaneously breathing rats before and after intravenous administration of the 5-HT2A receptor antagonist Ketanserin (1mg/kg). Intravenous ketanserin significantly attenuated ipsilateral diaphragm EMG activity in C2Hx animals but had no impact on diaphragm output in uninjured animals. We conclude that 5-HT2A receptor activation contributes to the recovery of ipsilateral phrenic motor output after chronic cervical spinal cord injury. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Spinal cord stimulation for refractory angina pectoris: a shocking experience.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Paul M; Macsullivan, Roisin

    2004-10-01

    Spinal cord stimulation has been extensively utilized in the treatment of conditions including complex regional pain syndrome, ischemic limb pain, failed back surgery syndrome, and angina pectoris. Recognized complications include infection, dural tap, and electrode movement. We report the case of a patient who experienced a sensation of extremely enhanced stimulation in the area covered by the spinal cord stimulator while in the vicinity of a high-tension electricity substation. Full resolution of symptoms occurred when the spinal cord stimulator was switched off, indicating that active stimulators may be susceptible to the effects of external electrical fields.

  20. Neuromyelitis optica mimics the morphology of spinal cord tumors.

    PubMed

    Erol, İlknur; Özkale, Murat; Savaş, Tülin; Alkan, Özlem; Çekinmez, Melih; Erbay, Ayşe

    2016-01-01

    Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is an autoimmune disorder of the central nervous system, that predominantly affects the spinal cord and the optic nerve. Its key features include transverse myelitis, commonly associated with extensive inflammation spanning three or more consecutive vertebral segments. Longitudinal extensive spinal cord lesions can also occur in systemic autoimmune diseases, infections, vascular and metabolic disorders, subsequent to irradiation, intramedullary tumors and paraneoplastic myelopathies. We present a case study of an 8-year-old girl seropositive for antibodies against the aquaporin 4 who displayed longitudinal extensive spinal cord lesions, that was initially misdiagnosed as an intramedullary tumor.

  1. Partial agonistic action of endomorphins in the mouse spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Mizoguchi, H; Wu, H E; Narita, M

    2001-09-07

    The partial agonistic properties of endogenous mu-opioid peptides endomorphin-1 and endomorphin-2 for G-protein activation were determined in the mouse spinal cord, monitoring the increases in guanosine-5'-o-(3-[35S]thio)triphosphate binding. The G-protein activation induced by endogenous opioid peptide beta-endorphin in the spinal cord was significantly, but partially, attenuated by co-incubation with endomorphin-1 or endomorphin-2. The data indicates that endomorphin-1 and endomorphin-2 are endogenous partial agonists for mu-opioid receptor in the mouse spinal cord.

  2. Current therapeutic strategies for inflammation following traumatic spinal cord injury☆

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Priyanka L.; Agarwal, Nitin; Barrese, James C.; Heary, Robert F.

    2012-01-01

    Damage from spinal cord injury occurs in two phases – the trauma of the initial mechanical insult and a secondary injury to nervous tissue spared by the primary insult. Apart from damage sustained as a result of direct trauma to the spinal cord, the post-traumatic inflammatory response contributes significantly to functional motor deficits exacerbated by the secondary injury. Attenuating the detrimental aspects of the inflammatory response is a promising strategy to potentially ameliorate the secondary injury, and promote significant functional recovery. This review details how the inflammatory component of secondary injury to the spinal cord can be treated currently and in the foreseeable future. PMID:25624806

  3. Propitious Therapeutic Modulators to Prevent Blood-Spinal Cord Barrier Disruption in Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Hemant; Ropper, Alexander E; Lee, Soo-Hong; Han, Inbo

    2016-05-18

    The blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB) is a specialized protective barrier that regulates the movement of molecules between blood vessels and the spinal cord parenchyma. Analogous to the blood-brain barrier (BBB), the BSCB plays a crucial role in maintaining the homeostasis and internal environmental stability of the central nervous system (CNS). After spinal cord injury (SCI), BSCB disruption leads to inflammatory cell invasion such as neutrophils and macrophages, contributing to permanent neurological disability. In this review, we focus on the major proteins mediating the BSCB disruption or BSCB repair after SCI. This review is composed of three parts. Section 1. SCI and the BSCB of the review describes critical events involved in the pathophysiology of SCI and their correlation with BSCB integrity/disruption. Section 2. Major proteins involved in BSCB disruption in SCI focuses on the actions of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), angiopoietins (Angs), bradykinin, nitric oxide (NO), and endothelins (ETs) in BSCB disruption and repair. Section 3. Therapeutic approaches discusses the major therapeutic compounds utilized to date for the prevention of BSCB disruption in animal model of SCI through modulation of several proteins.

  4. Cervical Spinal Cord Compression: A Rare Presentation of Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Chime, Chukwunonso; Arjun, Shiva; Reddy, Pavithra; Niazi, Masooma

    2017-01-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common primary malignancy of liver. Distant metastasis to various organs is well known. Skeletal metastasis is also reported to various locations. Vertebral metastasis has been reported mostly to thoracic spine. However, cervical spinal cord involvement leading to cord compression has been reported very rarely in literature. We present a case of 58-year-old male with liver cirrhosis presenting as neck pain. Further work-up revealed metastatic HCC to cervical spinal cord resulting in acute cord compression. Patient has been treated with neurosurgical intervention. PMID:28299213

  5. The Therapeutic Effectiveness of Delayed Fetal Spinal Cord Tissue Transplantation on Respiratory Function Following Mid-Cervical Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chia-Ching; Lai, Sih-Rong; Shao, Yu-Han; Chen, Chun-Lin; Lee, Kun-Ze

    2017-01-17

    Respiratory impairment due to damage of the spinal respiratory motoneurons and interruption of the descending drives from brainstem premotor neurons to spinal respiratory motoneurons is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality following cervical spinal cord injury. The present study was designed to evaluate the therapeutic effectiveness of delayed transplantation of fetal spinal cord (FSC) tissue on respiratory function in rats with mid-cervical spinal cord injury. Embryonic day-14 rat FSC tissue was transplanted into a C4 spinal cord hemilesion cavity in adult male rats at 1 week postinjury. The histological results showed that FSC-derived grafts can survive, fill the lesion cavity, and differentiate into neurons and astrocytes at 8 weeks post-transplantation. Some FSC-derived graft neurons exhibited specific neurochemical markers of neurotransmitter (e.g., serotonin, noradrenalin, or acetylcholine). Moreover, a robust expression of glutamatergic and γ-aminobutyric acid-ergic fibers was observed within FSC-derived grafts. Retrograde tracing results indicated that there was a connection between FSC-derived grafts and host phrenic nucleus. Neurophysiological recording of the phrenic nerve demonstrated that phrenic burst amplitude ipsilateral to the lesion was significantly greater in injured animals that received FSC transplantation than in those that received buffer transplantation under high respiratory drives. These results suggest that delayed FSC transplantation may have the potential to repair the injured spinal cord and promote respiratory functional recovery after mid-cervical spinal cord injury.

  6. Brain gliomas presenting with symptoms of spinal cord metastasis.

    PubMed

    Mariniello, Giuseppe; Peca, Carmela; Del Basso De Caro, Marialaura; Carotenuto, Biagio; Formicola, Fabiana; Elefante, Andrea; Maiuri, Francesco

    2015-10-01

    Three patients with brain gliomas (aged 41, 37, and 43 years) presented spinal cord symptoms as first neurological presentation (two cases) or at anaplastic progression (one case). Histologically, two cases were anaplastic (WHO III) astrocytomas and one anaplastic (WHO III) oligodendroglioma. The spinal surgery consisted of partial tumor resection in two cases with localized spinal cord metastasis, and tumor biopsy in another with diffuse spreading to the conus and cauda. Spinal irradiation was performed in one case. The time interval between the spinal surgery and the appearance of brain symptoms was very short (1 month or less). Two patients underwent brain surgery (tumor resection in one and stereotactic biopsy in another). The survival time was very short (2 and 3 months) in the two patients with anaplastic astrocytoma, whereas the patient with anaplastic oligodendroglioma survived 1 year after the spinal surgery. Brain gliomas may exceptionally present with symptoms of a spinal cord metastasis. The magnetic resonance imaging finding of a spinal cord enhancing lesion, particularly if associated with root enhancement, should suggest the presence of a brain glioma. In cases with a localized spinal lesion, an early spinal surgery is advised for both diagnosis and decompression of the nervous structures. However, the clinical outcome is poor and the survival time is short. © The Author(s) 2015.

  7. Differential regulation of perineuronal nets in the brain and spinal cord with exercise training.

    PubMed

    Smith, Calvin C; Mauricio, Rui; Nobre, Luis; Marsh, Barnaby; Wüst, Rob C I; Rossiter, Harry B; Ichiyama, Ronaldo M

    2015-02-01

    Perineuronal nets (PNNs) are lattice like structures which encapsulate the cell body and proximal dendrites of many neurons and are thought to be involved in regulating synaptic plasticity. It is believed that exercise can enhance the plasticity of the Central Nervous System (CNS) in healthy and dysfunctional states by shifting the balance between plasticity promoting and plasticity inhibiting factors in favor of the former. Recent work has focused on exercise effects on trophic factors but its effect on other plasticity regulators is poorly understood. In the present study we investigated how exercise regulates PNN expression in the lumbar spinal cord and areas of the brain associated with motor control and learning and memory. Adult, female Sprague-Dawley rats with free access to a running wheel for 6 weeks had significantly increased PNN expression in the spinal cord compared to sedentary rats (PNN thickness around motoneurons, exercise=15.75±0.63μm, sedentary=7.98±1.29μm, p<0.01). Conversely, in areas of the brain associated with learning and memory there was a significant reduction in perineuronal net expression (number of neurons with PNN in hippocampus CA1-exercise 21±0.56 and sedentary 24±0.34, p<0.01, thickness-exercised=2.37±0.13μm, sedentary=4.27±0.21μm; p<0.01). Our results suggest that in response to exercise, PNNs are differentially regulated in select regions of the CNS, with a general decreased expression in the brain and increased expression in the lumbar spinal cord. This differential expression may indicate different regulatory mechanisms associated with plasticity in the brain compared to the spinal cord.

  8. Increased synapsin expression and neurite sprouting in lamprey brain after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Lau, Billy Y B; Foldes, Andrea E; Alieva, Naila O; Oliphint, Paul A; Busch, David J; Morgan, Jennifer R

    2011-04-01

    Spinal cord injury induces structural plasticity throughout the mammalian nervous system, including distant locations in the brain. Several types of injury-induced plasticity have been identified, such as neurite sprouting, axon regeneration, and synaptic remodeling. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in injury-induced plasticity are unclear as is the extent to which injury-induced plasticity in brain is conserved across vertebrate lineages. Due to its robust roles in neurite outgrowth and synapse formation during developmental processes, we examined synapsin for its potential involvement in injury-induced plasticity. We used lamprey, a vertebrate that undergoes robust anatomical plasticity and functional recovery after spinal cord injury. At 3 and 11 weeks after spinal cord transection, synapsin I mRNA was upregulated >2-fold in lamprey brain, as assayed by semi-quantitative RT-PCR. Other synaptic vesicle-associated genes remained unchanged. In situ hybridization revealed that synapsin I mRNA was increased globally throughout the lamprey brain. Immunolabeling for synapsin I protein revealed a significant increase in both the intensity and density of synapsin I-positive structures in lamprey hindbrain at 11 weeks post-transection, relative to controls. Moreover, the number of structures immunolabeled for phospho-synapsin (serine 9) increased after injury, suggestive of neurite sprouting. Indeed, at the ultrastructural level, there was an increase in neurite density at 11 weeks post-transection. Taken together, these data show that neurite sprouting in the brain is an evolutionarily conserved response to a distant spinal cord injury and suggest that synapsin and its phosphorylation at serine 9 play key roles in the sprouting mechanism. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Malignant Spinal Cord Compression: Adapting Conventional Rehabilitation Approaches.

    PubMed

    Ruppert, Lisa Marie

    2017-02-01

    Spinal tumors are classically grouped into 3 categories: extradural, intradural extramedullary, and intradural intramedullary. Spinal tumors may cause spinal cord compression and vascular compromise resulting in pain or neurologic compromise. They may also alter the architecture of the spinal column, resulting in spinal instability. Oncologic management of spinal tumors varies according to the stability of the spine, neurologic status, and presence of pain. Treatment options include surgical intervention, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and hormonal manipulation. When combined with this management, rehabilitation can serve to relieve symptoms, improve quality of life, enhance functional independence, and prevent further complications in patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Functional Electrical Stimulation and Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Chester H.; Triolo, Ronald J.; Elias, Anastasia L.; Kilgore, Kevin L.; DiMarco, Anthony F.; Bogie, Kath; Vette, Albert H.; Audu, Musa; Kobetic, Rudi; Chang, Sarah R.; Chan, K. Ming; Dukelow, Sean; Bourbeau, Dennis J.; Brose, Steven W.; Gustafson, Kenneth J.; Kiss, Zelma; Mushahwar, Vivian K.

    2015-01-01

    Synopsis Spinal cord injuries (SCI) can disrupt communications between the brain and the body, leading to a loss of control over otherwise intact neuromuscular systems. The use of electrical stimulation (ES) of the central and peripheral nervous system can take advantage of these intact neuromuscular systems to provide therapeutic exercise options, to allow functional restoration, and even to manage or prevent many medical complications following SCI. The use of ES for the restoration of upper extremity, lower extremity and truncal functions can make many activities of daily living a potential reality for individuals with SCI. Restoring bladder and respiratory functions and preventing pressure ulcers may significantly decrease the morbidity and mortality following SCI. Many of the ES devices are already commercially available and should be considered by all SCI clinicians routinely as part of the lifelong rehabilitation care plan for all eligible individuals with SCI. PMID:25064792

  11. [Spinal cord toxoplasmosis in HIV infection].

    PubMed

    Pittner, Y; Dufour, J-F; David, G; Boibieux, A; Peyramond, D

    2009-06-01

    We report the case of an atypical localization of a spinal cord "toxoplasmic abscess". The 46-year-old patient, HIV-1 positive, was admitted for acute urine retention and gait disorders. MRI revealed a T12-L1 medullary lesion suggesting a tumoral, inflammatory and infectious pathology. The radiological aspect and immunosuppression lead to the initiation of a treatment against Toxoplasma gondii, following the same treatment principles as for cerebral toxoplasmosis. The diagnosis can only be proved by data from autopsy or surgical biopsy, but toxoplasmosis PCR on CSF seems to be an interesting alternative to confirm the diagnosis. According to the literature, PCR is not sensitive enough as a diagnostic tool. Improvement after treatment supported the diagnosis confirmed by PCR.

  12. Spinal cord infarction mimicking ischemic heart disease.

    PubMed

    Lee, Dae Won; Choi, Yoon Hee

    2017-06-01

    Spinal cord infarction is a rare condition and is easily misdiagnosed owing to its initial non-specific manifestation. We report a case of a 77-year-old man who presented with chest pain and upper back pain initially, and was misdiagnosed with a myocardial infarction. Four hours after admission, he complained of numbness in his entire left leg below the knee, with rapid deterioration of neurological symptoms. After 9 hours, loss of sensation progressed up to the T4 dermatome, strength of both lower extremities deteriorated to grade 0, and decrease in anal tone and deep tendon reflex was observed. Initial magnetic resonance imaging findings were normal; however, a signal change occurred 3 days after symptom onset. When patients present with acute chest pain and neurologic symptoms, the possibility of ischemic cardiac disease as well as any neurological manifestations must be investigated. Emergency physicians must remember the value of serial physical examinations.

  13. Spinal Cord Injury and Related Clinical Trials

    PubMed Central

    Ha, Kee-Yong; Kim, Sang-Il

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) has been considered an incurable condition and it often causes devastating sequelae. In terms of the pathophysiology of SCI, reducing secondary damage is the key to its treatment. Various researches and clinical trials have been performed, and some of them showed promising results; however, there is still no gold standard treatment with sufficient evidence. Two therapeutic concepts for SCI are neuroprotective and neuroregenerative strategies. The neuroprotective strategy modulates the pathomechanism of SCI. The purpose of neuroprotective treatment is to minimize secondary damage following direct injury. The aim of neuroregenerative treatment is to enhance the endogenous regeneration process and to alter the intrinsic barrier. With advancement in biotechnology, cell therapy using cell transplantation is currently under investigation. This review discusses the pathophysiology of SCI and introduces the therapeutic candidates that have been developed so far. PMID:28261421

  14. Fas and FasL expression in the spinal cord following cord hemisection in the monkey.

    PubMed

    Jia, Liu; Yu, Zou; Hui, Li; Yu-Guang, Guan; Xin-Fu, Zhou; Chao, You; Yanbin, Xiyang; Xi, Zhan; Jun, Wang; Xin-Hua, Heng; Xin-Hua, Hen; Ting-Hua, Wang

    2011-03-01

    The changes of endogenous Fas/FasL in injured spinal cord, mostly in primates, are not well known. In this study, we investigated the temporal changes in the expression of Fas and FasL and explored their possible roles in the ventral horn of the spinal cord and associated precentral gyrus following T(11) spinal cord hemisection in the adult rhesus monkey. A significant functional improvement was seen with the time going on in monkeys subjected to cord hemisection. Apoptotic cells were also seen in the ventral horn of injured spinal cord with TUNEL staining, and a marked increase presents at 7 days post operation (dpo). Simultaneously, the number of Fas and FasL immunoreactive neurons in the spinal cords caudal and rostral to injury site and their intracellular optical density (OD) in the ipsilateral side of injury site at 7 dpo increased significantly more than that of control group and contralateral sides. This was followed by a decrease and returned to normal level at 60 dpo. No positive neurons were observed in precentral gyrus. The present results may provide some insights to understand the role of Fas/FasL in the spinal cord but not motor cortex with neuronal apoptosis and neuroplasticity in monkeys subjected to hemisection spinal cord injury.

  15. Ischemic spinal cord infarction in children without vertebral fracture

    PubMed Central

    Nance, Jessica R.; Golomb, Meredith R.

    2007-01-01

    Spinal cord infarction in children is a rare condition which is becoming more widely recognized. There are few reports in the pediatric literature characterizing etiology, diagnosis, treament and prognosis. The risk factors for pediatric ischemic spinal cord infarction include obstruction of blood flow associated with cardiovascular compromise or malformation, iatrogenic or traumatic vascular inujury, cerebellar herniation, thrombotic or embolic disease, infection, and vasculitis. In many children the cause of spinal cord ischemia in the absence of vertebral fracture is unknown. Imaging diagnosis of spinal cord ischemia is often difficult due to the small transverse area of the cord, cerebrospinal fluid artifact and inadequate resolution of MRI. Physical therapy is the most important treatment option. The prognosis is dependent on the level of spinal cord damage, early identification and reversal of ischemia, and follow-up with intensive physical therapy and medical support. In addition to summarizing the literature regarding spinal cord infarction in children without vertebral fracture, this review article adds two cases to the literature which highlight the difficulties and controversies in the management of this condition. PMID:17437902

  16. Cervical spinal cord infarction after cervical spine decompressive surgery.

    PubMed

    Kalb, Samuel; Fakhran, Saeed; Dean, Bruce; Ross, Jeffrey; Porter, Randall W; Kakarla, Udaya K; Ruggieri, Paul; Theodore, Nicholas

    2014-01-01

    To report five patients who underwent cervical decompressive surgeries and developed persistent postoperative neurologic deficits compatible with spinal cord infarctions and evaluate causes for these rare complications. The clinical courses and imaging studies of five patients were retrospectively analyzed. Imaging findings, types of surgeries, vascular compromise or risk factors, hypotensive episodes, intraoperative somatosensory evoked potentials, concomitant brain infarctions, and clinical degree and radiographic extent of spinal cord infarction were studied. The presence of spinal cord infarction was determined by clinical course and imaging evaluation. All five patients had antecedent cervical cord region vascular compromise or generalized vascular risk factors. Four patients developed hypotensive episodes, two intraoperatively and two postoperatively. None of the four patients with hypotensive episodes had imaging or clinical evidence of concomitant brain infarctions. Neuroimaging evaluation of spinal cord infarction after decompressive surgery is done to exclude spinal cord compression, to ensure adequate surgical decompression, and to confirm infarction by imaging. Antecedent, unrecognized preoperative vascular compromise may be a significant contributor to spinal cord infarction by itself or in combination with hypotension. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Role of taurine in spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Gupta, R C; Seki, Y; Yosida, J

    2006-08-01

    Taurine is a sulfur amino acid. It is found endogenously in human and several others tissues. It is significantly in high concentration in mammals. Human body contains about 0.1% of body weight as taurine. It has a number of physiological and pharmacological actions. It is also used in the therapy of important organs dysfunctions. In spinal cord it has inhibitory effects; like antiepileptic and anti-nociceptive. Taurine also inhibits substance p induced biting and scratching behavior. In spinal cord injury elevated level of taurine has been observed. Higher level of taurine has been also recorded in SCI therapy using, known clinical agent methyl prednisolone (MP). The increased taurine concentration seems to be involved in protection and regeneration of tissues following injury. In SCI along with physical injury secondary activities also takes place which are complex in nature. Secondary activity includes vascular events and activation of neutrophils, resulting endothelial damage. Activated neutrophils; release a variety of inflammatory mediators such as myeloperoxidase (MPO), reactive oxygen species (ROS), and some others. It is believed that taurine exert its protective action through scavenging of ROS and down regulating several other inflammatory mediators like tumor necrosis factors (TNFalpha). The inside of mechanism reveals toxic substance HOCl is produced by MPO is converted to less toxic substances through scavenging action of taurine. Amino acid therapy has its own limitations and to over come such situation there is a need to develop small, simple lipophilic analogs of taurine. Use of taurine analogs has provided better results; for example, N- chloro taurine (NCT) which is a taurine derivative has exhibited therapeutic advances over taurine. Taurine and its analogs with sound experimental and clinical support may constitute a new class of therapeutic agents for SCI., and perhaps this review may provide enough material to think of this.

  18. Injury alters intrinsic functional connectivity within the primate spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Chen, Li Min; Mishra, Arabinda; Yang, Pai-Feng; Wang, Feng; Gore, John C

    2015-05-12

    Recent demonstrations of correlated low-frequency MRI signal variations between subregions of the spinal cord at rest in humans, similar to those found in the brain, suggest that such resting-state functional connectivity constitutes a common feature of the intrinsic organization of the entire central nervous system. We report our detection of functional connectivity within the spinal cords of anesthetized squirrel monkeys at rest and show that the strength of connectivity within these networks is altered by the effects of injuries. By quantifying the low-frequency MRI signal correlations between different horns within spinal cord gray matter, we found distinct functional connectivity relationships between the different sensory and motor horns, a pattern that was similar to activation patterns evoked by nociceptive heat or tactile stimulation of digits. All horns within a single spinal segment were functionally connected, with the strongest connectivity occurring between ipsilateral dorsal and ventral horns. Each horn was strongly connected to the same horn on neighboring segments, but this connectivity reduced drastically along the spinal cord. Unilateral injury to the spinal cord significantly weakened the strength of the intrasegment horn-to-horn connectivity only on the injury side and in slices below the lesion. These findings suggest resting-state functional connectivity may be a useful biomarker of functional integrity in injured and recovering spinal cords.

  19. Use of intraoperative ultrasonography in canine spinal cord lesions.

    PubMed

    Nanai, Beatrix; Lyman, Ronald; Bichsel, Pierre S

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this retrospective study was to describe the intraoperative appearance of various spinal cord conditions, and to investigate how intraoperative ultrasonography assisted in modification of surgical and postoperative treatment plans. Intraoperative ultrasonography (B-mode, and power Doppler mode) was used in 25 dogs undergoing spinal surgery. The neurologic conditions included cervical spondylomyelopathy, intervertebral disc (IVD) protrusion, IVD extrusion, spinal tumors, nerve sheath mass, granulomatous myelitis, and discospondylitis. All of these diagnoses were supported by histopathologic and/or cytologic evaluation. It was possible to visualize the spinal cord and the abnormal spinal tissue in all of the patients. Power Doppler imaging allowed assessment of the spinal cord microcirculation, and assisted in judgment of the degree of decompression. Ultrasound imaging directly impacted the surgical and the medical treatment plans in four patients. Owing to the intraoperative imaging, two hemilaminectomies were extended cranially and caudally, and additional disc spaces were fenestrated, one hemilaminectomy site was extended dorsally to retrieve the disc material from the opposite side, and one intramedullary cervical spinal cord lesion was discovered, aspirated, and consequently diagnosed as granulomatous inflammation, which altered the long-term medication protocol in that dog. This study suggests that intraoperative sonographic spinal cord imaging is a useful and viable technique.

  20. [Spinal cord compression due to a epidural lipoma].

    PubMed

    Urculo, E; Samprón, N; Alfaro, R; Arrazola, M; Linazasoro, G

    2008-04-01

    The spinal extradural space is normally occupied by adipose tissue and a venous plexus, so it should be not surprising that lipomas arise and reach sufficient size to compress symptomatically the spinal cord. Nevertheless, the spinal epidural lipomas are rare and benign tumours may present as a progressive spinal cord compression syndrome. Magnetic resonance imaging is useful in demonstrating the full extent and characteristics of these lesions, the severity of cord compression and the location in the canal. Usually, the lesion is amenable to total surgical extirpation and the functional prognosis is good. Histopathologically the tumour consists of a mature adipose cells matrix intermixed with vascular endothelial channels, that is the reason why it is also named angiolipomas. A 47 year-old woman complained of dorsal and bilateral submamarian pain lasting two years and progressive loss of sensibility and weakness in her legs. Following magnetic resonance studies a posterior spinal cord compression by an extradural tumour at T3-T7 levels was observed. She was operated on and we found an extradural yellow tumour easily to dissect and it was completely removed. One year later she is asymptomatic. Spinal epidural lipoma is a benign tumour which initially presents itself with local or radicular pain accompanied by progressive spinal cord compression syndrome. The choice treatment is laminectomy and total excision. Probably, this is one of the easiest tumours to remove of the spinal canal and a source of satisfaction because a complete recovery can usually be achieved.

  1. Basic Advances and New Avenues in Therapy of Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Dobkin, Bruce H.; Havton, Leif A.

    2014-01-01

    The prospects for successful clinical trials of neuroprotective and neurorestorative interventions for patients with acute and chronic myelopathies depend on preclinical animal models of injury and repair that reflect the human condition. Remarkable progress continues in the attempt to promote connections between the brain and the sensory and motor neurons below a spinal cord lesion. Recent experiments demonstrate the potential for biological therapies to regenerate or remyelinate axons and to incorporate new neural cells into the milieu of a traumatic spinal cord injury. The computational flexibility and plasticity of the sensorimotor systems of the brain, spinal cord, and motor unit make functional use of new circuitry feasible in patients. To incorporate residual and new pathways, neural repair strategies must be coupled to rehabilitation therapies that drive activity-dependent plasticity for walking, for reaching and grasping, and for bowel and bladder control. Prevention of pain and dysautonomia are also clinical targets. Research aims to define the temporal windows of opportunity for interventions, test the safety and efficacy of delivery systems of agents and cells, and provide a better understanding of the cascades of gene expression and cell interactions both acutely and chronically after injury. These bench-to-bedside studies are defining the neurobiology of spinal cord injury rehabilitation. PMID:14746521

  2. Shuttle mission effects on glutamate receptor expression in the developing rodent spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Stegenga, S L; Eward, W; Kalb, R G

    2003-06-01

    Within the mammalian central nervous system (CNS), glutamate receptors play a fundamental role in excitatory neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity. Studies of the neonatal cerebral cortex suggests that rearing environment can influence the dynamic patterns of glutamate receptor subunit expression during development. We examined this issue in the developing spinal cord, a well studied region of the CNS in which activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is known to occur. We compared the abundance (by immunoblot analysis) and tissue distribution (by immunohistology) of glutamate receptor subunits in neonatal animals who participated in the Neurolab Space Shuttle mission. Flight animals were either postnatal day 8 or 13 at launch and spent the next 16 d in microgravity; tissues were recovered within 12 h of landing. Littermate control animals were reared on Earth at 1 G. Using semi-quantitative immunoblot assays, no statistically significant differences were found in the overall abundance of any glutamate receptor subunit in the spinal cords of the two groups of animals. Similarly, immunohistological examination of spinal cords revealed no evidence for differences in the distribution of glutamate receptor subunits between the two groups of animals. These results indicate that the developmental regulation of glutamate receptor subunit expression in the spinal cord is not appreciably affected by the conditions associated with this space shuttle mission and prolonged rearing period in microgravity.

  3. Spinal cord injuries due to diving accidents.

    PubMed

    Aito, S; D'Andrea, M; Werhagen, L

    2005-02-01

    Retrospective study and data analysis. To investigate and analyse the main features of spinal cord injuries due to diving accidents accepted in our Centre from June 1978 to December 2002. Regional Spinal Unit of Florence, Italy. Diving accidents mostly occur in a young and healthy population and most of the patients develop tetraplegia with a severe lifelong disability. From 1978 to 2002, 65 patients with spinal injuries due to diving accidents were admitted to the Regional Spinal Unit of Florence. A retrospective study was conducted by analysing data stored in our local computerized database. We considered the vertebral injury, ASIA-ISCOS neurological classification on admission and discharge, gender, age at the time of injury, month of injury, treatment of vertebral lesion, length of stay in the Spinal Unit, neurological outcome, and complications. Data were analysed statistically by using the Fisher's exact test and logistic regression. In all, 62/65 patients were males (95%). Mean age at injury time: 22 years. On admission, 35/65 were neurologically complete ASIA A (54%), while 16 were classified ASIA B, 7 ASIA C and 7 ASIA D, according to the ASIA-ISCOS neurological standard of classification. C6 was the most common neurological motor level (40%) and C5 the most common vertebral injury level. In all, 36/65 (55%) patients underwent surgical treatment. Mean hospitalization time was 5 months. No neurological deterioration was recorded. In all, 20/65 (31%) patients improved neurologically and 16/20 (80%) of those had received surgical treatment. In all, 15/65 (23%) patients had complications and one patient died during the hospitalization period. Patients whose vertebral lesions were surgically treated had a better neurological outcome than conservatively treated ones. Teardrop fractures showed worse neurological outcome as compared with burst fractures. Neurological improvement was more present in initially incomplete lesions. Treatment with high dose

  4. Increased Cx32 expression in spinal cord TrkB oligodendrocytes following peripheral axon injury.

    PubMed

    Coulibaly, Aminata P; Isaacson, Lori G

    2016-08-03

    Following injury to motor axons in the periphery, retrograde influences from the injury site lead to glial cell plasticity in the vicinity of the injured neurons. Following the transection of peripherally located preganglionic axons of the cervical sympathetic trunk (CST), a population of oligodendrocyte (OL) lineage cells expressing full length TrkB, the cognate receptor for brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), is significantly increased in number in the spinal cord. Such robust plasticity in OL lineage cells in the spinal cord following peripheral axon transection led to the hypothesis that the gap junction communication protein connexin 32 (Cx32), which is specific to OL lineage cells, was influenced by the injury. Following CST transection, Cx32 expression in the spinal cord intermediolateral cell column (IML), the location of the parent cell bodies, was significantly increased. The increased Cx32 expression was localized specifically to TrkB OLs in the IML, rather than other cell types in the OL cell lineage, with the population of Cx32/TrkB cells increased by 59%. Cx32 expression in association with OPCs was significantly decreased at one week following the injury. The results of this study provide evidence that peripheral axon injury can differentially affect the gap junction protein expression in OL lineage cells in the adult rat spinal cord. We conclude that the retrograde influences originating from the peripheral injury site elicit dramatic changes in the CNS expression of Cx32, which in turn may mediate the plasticity of OL lineage cells observed in the spinal cord following peripheral axon injury.

  5. Activity-Dependent Increase in Neurotrophic Factors Is Associated with an Enhanced Modulation of Spinal Reflexes after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Côté, Marie-Pascale; Azzam, Gregory A.; Lemay, Michel A.; Zhukareva, Victoria

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Activity-based therapies such as passive bicycling and step-training on a treadmill contribute to motor recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI), leading to a greater number of steps performed, improved gait kinematics, recovery of phase-dependent modulation of spinal reflexes, and prevention of decrease in muscle mass. Both tasks consist of alternating movements that rhythmically stretch and shorten hindlimb muscles. However, the paralyzed hindlimbs are passively moved by a motorized apparatus during bike-training, whereas locomotor movements during step-training are generated by spinal networks triggered by afferent feedback. Our objective was to compare the task-dependent effect of bike- and step-training after SCI on physiological measures of spinal cord plasticity in relation to changes in levels of neurotrophic factors. Thirty adult female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent complete spinal transection at a low thoracic level (T12). The rats were assigned to one of three groups: bike-training, step-training, or no training. The exercise regimen consisted of 15 min/d, 5 days/week, for 4 weeks, beginning 5 days after SCI. During a terminal experiment, H-reflexes were recorded from interosseus foot muscles following stimulation of the tibial nerve at 0.3, 5, or 10 Hz. The animals were sacrificed and the spinal cords were harvested for Western blot analysis of the expression of neurotrophic factors in the lumbar spinal cord. We provide evidence that bike- and step-training significantly increase the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), and NT-4 in the lumbar enlargement of SCI rats, whereas only step-training increased glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) levels. An increase in neurotrophic factor protein levels that positively correlated with the recovery of H-reflex frequency-dependent depression suggests a role for neurotrophic factors in reflex normalization. PMID:21083432

  6. Targeted, activity-dependent spinal stimulation produces long-lasting motor recovery in chronic cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    McPherson, Jacob G; Miller, Robert R; Perlmutter, Steve I

    2015-09-29

    Use-dependent movement therapies can lead to partial recovery of motor function after neurological injury. We attempted to improve recovery by developing a neuroprosthetic intervention that enhances movement therapy by directing spike timing-dependent plasticity in spared motor pathways. Using a recurrent neural-computer interface in rats with a cervical contusion of the spinal cord, we synchronized intraspinal microstimulation below the injury with the arrival of functionally related volitional motor commands signaled by muscle activity in the impaired forelimb. Stimulation was delivered during physical retraining of a forelimb behavior and throughout the day for 3 mo. Rats receiving this targeted, activity-dependent spinal stimulation (TADSS) exhibited markedly enhanced recovery compared with animals receiving targeted but open-loop spinal stimulation and rats receiving physical retraining alone. On a forelimb reach and grasp task, TADSS animals recovered 63% of their preinjury ability, more than two times the performance level achieved by the other therapy groups. Therapeutic gains were maintained for 3 additional wk without stimulation. The results suggest that activity-dependent spinal stimulation can induce neural plasticity that improves behavioral recovery after spinal cord injury.

  7. Endogenous neurogenesis in adult mammals after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Duan, Hongmei; Song, Wei; Zhao, Wen; Gao, Yudan; Yang, Zhaoyang; Li, Xiaoguang

    2016-12-01

    During the whole life cycle of mammals, new neurons are constantly regenerated in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus and in the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles. Thanks to emerging methodologies, great progress has been made in the characterization of spinal cord endogenous neural stem cells (ependymal cells) and identification of their role in adult spinal cord development. As recently evidenced, both the intrinsic and extrinsic molecular mechanisms of ependymal cells control the sequential steps of the adult spinal cord neurogenesis. This review introduces the concept of adult endogenous neurogenesis, the reaction of ependymal cells after adult spinal cord injury (SCI), the heterogeneity and markers of ependymal cells, the factors that regulate ependymal cells, and the niches that impact the activation or differentiation of ependymal cells.

  8. Experimental studies on spinal cord function using evoked action potentials.

    PubMed

    Soeda, S; Satomi, K; Hirabayashi, K

    1990-01-01

    Experiments were carried out on cats to determine the use of conductive evoked spinal cord action potentials in diagnosing motor function of the spinal cord. Direct stimulation from the dura produced three negative wave potentials, N1, N2 and N3. The intraspinal pathway of N2 and N3 was the dorsal column. The pathways of N1, determined by dorsal and ventral epidural recording, were the dorsilateral funicle and the extrapyramidal tracts. A collision experiment between potential N1 and pyramidal tract action potential did not reflect the function of the tract as the amplitude of the action potential was too small. Nevertheless, it is considered that conductive evoked spinal cord action potentials could become a valuable method of assessing spinal cord function as they reflect the function of the extrapyramidal tracts, as well as of the dorsilateral funicle and the dorsal column.

  9. Dynamic loading characteristics of an intradural spinal cord stimulator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliynyk, M. S.; Gillies, G. T.; Oya, H.; Wilson, S.; Reddy, C. G.; Howard, M. A.

    2013-01-01

    We have measured the forces that act on the electrode-bearing surface of an intradural neuromodulator designed to be in direct contact with the pial surface of the spinal cord, as part of our effort to develop a new method for treating intractable pain. The goal was to investigate the pressures produced by this device on the spinal cord and compare them with normal intrathecal pressure. For this purpose, we employed a dual-sensor arrangement that allowed us to measure the response of a custom-designed silicone spinal cord surrogate to the forces applied by the device. We found that the device had a mean compliance of ≈63 μN μm-1, and that over a 3 mm range of compression, the mid-span pressure it exerted on the spinal cord was ≈1.88 × 103 Pa = 14.1 mm Hg, which lies within the range of normal intrathecal pressure in humans.

  10. Biomaterial Design Strategies for the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injuries

    PubMed Central

    Straley, Karin S.; Po Foo, Cheryl Wong

    2010-01-01

    Abstract The highly debilitating nature of spinal cord injuries has provided much inspiration for the design of novel biomaterials that can stimulate cellular regeneration and functional recovery. Many experts agree that the greatest hope for treatment of spinal cord injuries will involve a combinatorial approach that integrates biomaterial scaffolds, cell transplantation, and molecule delivery. This manuscript presents a comprehensive review of biomaterial-scaffold design strategies currently being applied to the development of nerve guidance channels and hydrogels that more effectively stimulate spinal cord tissue regeneration. To enhance the regenerative capacity of these two scaffold types, researchers are focusing on optimizing the mechanical properties, cell-adhesivity, biodegradability, electrical activity, and topography of synthetic and natural materials, and are developing mechanisms to use these scaffolds to deliver cells and biomolecules. Developing scaffolds that address several of these key design parameters will lead to more successful therapies for the regeneration of spinal cord tissue. PMID:19698073

  11. Rare adverse effect of spinal cord stimulation: micturition inhibition.

    PubMed

    La Grua, Marco; Michelagnoli, Giuliano

    2010-06-01

    In current medical literature, most of the reported complications of spinal cord stimulation concern technical problems, such as lead malfunction, migration, breakage, or internal pulse generator dysfunction, whereas reports about the side effects on internal organ function caused by spinal cord stimulation are rare. In this clinical report, we describe uncommon side effects owing to spinal cord stimulation in a patient with chronic neuropathic pain. Our patient developed unexpected urinary retention during electrical epidural stimulation. This case report highlights the incomplete knowledge about the mechanism of action of spinal cord stimulation and its influence on the interactions between the autonomic nervous system and voluntary control of urinary function. The complete recovery of bladder function after the interruption of stimulation suggests that electrical stimulation caused the adverse effects in this clinical case.

  12. Molecular and cellular development of spinal cord locomotor circuitry

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Daniel C.; Niu, Tianyi; Alaynick, William A.

    2015-01-01

    The spinal cord of vertebrate animals is comprised of intrinsic circuits that are capable of sensing the environment and generating complex motor behaviors. There are two major perspectives for understanding the biology of this complicated structure. The first approaches the spinal cord from the point of view of function and is based on classic and ongoing research in electrophysiology, adult behavior, and spinal cord injury. The second view considers the spinal cord from a developmental perspective and is founded mostly on gene expression and gain-of-function and loss-of-function genetic experiments. Together these studies have uncovered functional classes of neurons and their lineage relationships. In this review, we summarize our knowledge of developmental classes, with an eye toward understanding the functional roles of each group. PMID:26136656

  13. Modeling the neuroanatomic propagation of ALS in the spinal cord

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drawert, Brian; Thakore, Nimish; Mitchell, Brian; Pioro, Erik; Ravits, John; Petzold, Linda R.

    2017-07-01

    Recent hypotheses of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) progression have posited a point-source origin of motor neuron death with neuroanatomic propagation either contiguously to adjacent regions, or along networks via axonal and synaptic connections. Although the molecular mechanisms of propagation are unknown, one leading hypothesis is a "prion-like" spread of misfolded and aggregated proteins, including SOD1 and TDP-43. We have developed a mathematical model representing cellular and molecular spread of ALS in the human spinal cord. Our model is based on the stochastic reaction-diffusion master equation approach using a tetrahedral discretized space to capture the complex geometry of the spinal cord. Domain dimension and shape was obtained by reconstructing human spinal cord from high-resolution magnetic resonance (MR) images and known gross and histological neuroanatomy. Our preliminary results qualitatively recapitulate the clinically observed pattern of spread of ALS thorough the spinal cord.

  14. Toxoplasmosis of the spinal cord in an immunocompromised patient

    PubMed Central

    Martínez, Ernesto; Bolívar, Guillermo; Sánchez, Sandra; Carrascal, Edwin

    2013-01-01

    We, herein, describe an HIV-positive patient with toxoplasmosis of the spinal cord. We also carried out a comprehensive literature review of this topic, with emphasis on the diagnostic tools and therapeutic approach. PMID:24892240

  15. What Are Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Children?

    MedlinePlus

    ... cells in the brain. They transmit chemical and electric signals that determine thought, memory, emotion, speech, muscle ... brain and spinal cord. This helps neurons send electric signals through the axons. Tumors starting in these ...

  16. Spinal Cord Injury: Facts and Figures at a Glance

    MedlinePlus

    ... statistics are not derived from the National SCI Database. SCI is falls, followed by acts of violence ( ... SINCE 2005 T he National Spinal Cord Injury Database has been in existence since 1973 and captures ...

  17. Diaphragm activation via high frequency spinal cord stimulation in a rodent model of spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kowalski, Krzysztof E; Hsieh, Yee-Hsee; Dick, Thomas E; DiMarco, Anthony F

    2013-09-01

    As demonstrated in a canine model, high frequency spinal cord stimulation (HF-SCS) is a novel and more physiologic method of electrical activation of the inspiratory muscles compared to current techniques. The dog model, however, has significant limitations due to cost and societal concerns. Since the rodent respiratory system is also a relevant model for the study of neuronal circuitry function, the aims of the present study were to a) assess the effects of HF-SCS and b) determine the methodology of application of this technique in rats. In 9 Sprague Dawley rats, diaphragm multiunit and single motor unit EMG activity were assessed during spontaneous breathing and HF-SCS applied on the ventral epidural surface of the spinal cord at the T2 level following C1 spinal section. As in dogs, HF-SCS results in the activation of the diaphragm at physiological firing frequencies and the generation of large inspired volumes. Mean maximum firing frequencies of the diaphragm during spontaneous breathing and HF-SCS were 23.3 ± 1.4 Hz (range: 9.8-51.6 Hz) and 26.6 ± 1.3 Hz; range: 12.0-72.9 Hz, respectively, at comparable inspired volumes. Moreover, HF-SCS was successful in pacing these animals over a 60-min period without evidence of system fatigue. Our results suggest that, similar to the dog model, HF-SCS in the rat results in the activation of spinal cord tracts which synapse with the phrenic motoneuron pool, allowing the processing of the stimulus and consequent physiologic activation of the inspiratory muscles. The rat may be a useful model for further studies evaluating phrenic motoneuron physiology. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Mechanisms underlying the recovery of lower urinary tract function following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    de Groat, William C; Yoshimura, Naoki

    2006-01-01

    The lower urinary tract has two main functions, the storage and periodic expulsion of urine, which are regulated by a complex neural control system in the brain and lumbosacral spinal cord. This neural system coordinates the activity of two functional units in the lower urinary tract: (1) a reservoir (the urinary bladder) and (2) an outlet (consisting of bladder neck, urethra and striated muscles of the pelvic floor). During urine storage the outlet is closed and the bladder is quiescent, thereby maintaining a low intravesical pressure over a wide range of bladder volumes. During micturition the outlet relaxes and the bladder contracts to promote the release of urine. This reciprocal relationship between bladder and outlet is generated by visceral reflex circuits, some of which are under voluntary control. Experimental studies in animals indicate that the micturition reflex is mediated by a spinobulbospinal pathway passing through a coordination center (the pontine micturition center) located in the rostral brainstem. This reflex pathway is in turn modulated by higher centers in the cerebral cortex that are presumably involved in the voluntary control of micturition. Spinal cord injury at cervical or thoracic levels disrupts voluntary control of voiding as well as the normal reflex pathways that coordinate bladder and sphincter functions. Following spinal cord injury, the bladder is initially areflexic but then becomes hyperreflexic due to the emergence of a spinal micturition reflex pathway. Studies in animals indicate that the recovery of bladder function after spinal cord injury is dependent in part on plasticity of bladder afferent pathways and the unmasking of reflexes triggered by capsaicin-sensitive C-fiber bladder afferent neurons. The plasticity is associated with changes in the properties of ion channels and electrical excitability of afferent neurons, and appears to be mediated in part by neurotrophic factors released in the spinal cord and the

  19. Distribution and localization of 5-HT(1A) receptors in the rat lumbar spinal cord after transection and deafferentation.

    PubMed

    Otoshi, Chad K; Walwyn, Wendy M; Tillakaratne, Niranjala J K; Zhong, Hui; Roy, Roland R; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2009-04-01

    The serotonergic system is highly plastic, capable of adapting to changing afferent information in diverse mammalian systems. We hypothesized that removing supraspinal and/or peripheral input would play an important role in defining the distribution of one of the most prevalent serotonergic receptors, the 5-HT(1A) receptor (R), in the spinal cord. We investigated the distribution of this receptor in response to a complete thoracic (T7-T8) spinal cord transection (eliminating supraspinal input), or to spinal cord isolation (eliminating both supraspinal and peripheral input) in adult rats. Using two antibodies raised against either the second extracellular region (ECL(2)) or the third intracellular region (ICL(3)) of the 5-HT(1A)R, we compared the 5-HT(1A)R levels and distributions in specific laminae of the L3-L5 segments among the control, spinal cord-transected, and spinal cord-isolated groups. Each antibody labeled different populations of 5-HT(1A)R: ECL(2) labeled receptors in the axon hillock, whereas ICL(3) labeled receptors predominantly throughout the soma and proximal dendrites. Spinal cord transection increased the number of ECL(2)-positive cells in the medial region of laminae III-IV and lamina VII, and the mean length of the labeled axon hillocks in lamina IX. The number of ICL(3)-labeled cells was higher in lamina VII and in both the medial and lateral regions of lamina IX in the spinal cord-transected compared to the control group. In contrast, the length and number of ECL(2)-immunolabeled processes and ICL(3)-immunolabeled cells were similar in the spinal cord-isolated and control groups. Combined, these data demonstrate that the upregulation in 5-HT(1A)R that occurs with spinal cord transection alone is dependent on the presence of sensory input.

  20. Spinal cord stress injury assessment (SCOSIA): clinical applications of mechanical modeling of the spinal cord and brainstem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Kenneth H.; Choi, Jae; Wilson, William; Berry, Joel; Henderson, Fraser C., Sr.

    2009-02-01

    Abnormal stretch and strain is a major cause of injury to the spinal cord and brainstem. Such forces can develop from age-related degeneration, congenital malformations, occupational exposure, or trauma such as sporting accidents, whiplash and blast injury. While current imaging technologies provide excellent morphology and anatomy of the spinal cord, there is no validated diagnostic tool to assess mechanical stresses exerted upon the spinal cord and brainstem. Furthermore, there is no current means to correlate these stress patterns with known spinal cord injuries and other clinical metrics such as neurological impairment. We have therefore developed the spinal cord stress injury assessment (SCOSIA) system, which uses imaging and finite element analysis to predict stretch injury. This system was tested on a small cohort of neurosurgery patients. Initial results show that the calculated stress values decreased following surgery, and that this decrease was accompanied by a significant decrease in neurological symptoms. Regression analysis identified modest correlations between stress values and clinical metrics. The strongest correlations were seen with the Brainstem Disability Index (BDI) and the Karnofsky Performance Score (KPS), whereas the weakest correlations were seen with the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) scale. SCOSIA therefore shows encouraging initial results and may have wide applicability to trauma and degenerative disease involving the spinal cord and brainstem.

  1. Radiation myelopathy of cervical spinal cord simulating intramedullary neoplasm

    PubMed Central

    Fogelholm, R.; Haltia, M.; Andersson, L. C.

    1974-01-01

    Radiation myelopathy is a well-known complication of irradiation therapy of neoplasms in the vicinity of the spinal cord. Most earlier authors have stressed the association of a normal myelogram and normal CSF protein level with this condition. One case of radiation myelopathy with a myelogram simulating intramedullary neoplasm and with extremely high CSF protein concentration is presented. Six months after myelography necropsy revealed severe atrophy of the previously thickened lower cervical spinal cord. The pathogenetic mechanisms are discussed. Images PMID:4443812

  2. [Spinal cord stimulation for the management of chronic pain].

    PubMed

    Perruchoud, Christophe; Mariotti, Nicolas

    2016-06-22

    Neuromodulation techniques modify the activity of the central or peripheral nervous system. Spinal cord stimulation is a reversible and minimally invasive treatment whose efficacy and cost effectiveness are recognized for the treatment of chronic neuropathic pain or ischemic pain. Spinal cord stimulation is not the option of last resort and should be considered among other options before prescribing long-term opioids or considering reoperation. The selection and regular follow-up of patients are crucial to the success of the therapy.

  3. Robust, accurate and fast automatic segmentation of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    De Leener, Benjamin; Kadoury, Samuel; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2014-09-01

    Spinal cord segmentation provides measures of atrophy and facilitates group analysis via inter-subject correspondence. Automatizing this procedure enables studies with large throughput and minimizes user bias. Although several automatic segmentation methods exist, they are often restricted in terms of image contrast and field-of-view. This paper presents a new automatic segmentation method (PropSeg) optimized for robustness, accuracy and speed. The algorithm is based on the propagation of a deformable model and is divided into three parts: firstly, an initialization step detects the spinal cord position and orientation using a circular Hough transform on multiple axial slices rostral and caudal to the starting plane and builds an initial elliptical tubular mesh. Secondly, a low-resolution deformable model is propagated along the spinal cord. To deal with highly variable contrast levels between the spinal cord and the cerebrospinal fluid, the deformation is coupled with a local contrast-to-noise adaptation at each iteration. Thirdly, a refinement process and a global deformation are applied on the propagated mesh to provide an accurate segmentation of the spinal cord. Validation was performed in 15 healthy subjects and two patients with spinal cord injury, using T1- and T2-weighted images of the entire spinal cord and on multiecho T2*-weighted images. Our method was compared against manual segmentation and against an active surface method. Results show high precision for all the MR sequences. Dice coefficients were 0.9 for the T1- and T2-weighted cohorts and 0.86 for the T2*-weighted images. The proposed method runs in less than 1min on a normal computer and can be used to quantify morphological features such as cross-sectional area along the whole spinal cord.

  4. Anatomy and biomechanics of the spinal column and cord.

    PubMed

    Miele, Vincent J; Panjabi, Manohar M; Benzel, Edward C

    2012-01-01

    The field of biomechanics combines the disciplines of biology and engineering, attempting to quantitatively describe the complicated properties of biological materials. These properties depend not only upon the inherent attributes of its constituents but also upon how the constituents are arranged relative to each other. Its importance in understanding spinal column and spinal cord pathology cannot be overemphasized. This chapter is a primer on the application of biomechanical principles to the normal and pathological spine. The basic concepts of biomechanics will first be reviewed followed by a review of the structural anatomy of the osteoligamentous spinal column and the biomechanics of injury. Relevant spinal cord anatomy will then be addressed as well as current biomechanical theories of spinal cord injury.

  5. Effect of Combination of Non-Invasive Spinal Cord Electrical Stimulation and Serotonin Receptor Activation in Patients with Chronic Spinal Cord Lesion.

    PubMed

    Moshonkina, T R; Shapkova, E Yu; Sukhotina, I A; Emeljannikov, D V; Gerasimenko, Yu P

    2016-10-01

    We analyzed the efficiency of percutaneous electrical stimulation of the spinal cord and serotonin receptor activation in rehabilitation of paralyzed patients. Four-week course of spinal cord electrical stimulation combined with mechanotherapy produced positive shifts in the status of chronically paralyzed patients. Serotonin receptor activation potentiated the effect of spinal cord stimulation and can be regarded as an additional neurorehabilitation option.

  6. [Vascular and autonomic disorders of the spinal cord in dystopia of the spinal motor segment].

    PubMed

    Gongal'skiĭ, V V; Kuftyreva, T P

    1992-01-01

    Microcirculation disorders may cause functional deviation in gray matter cells of the spinal cord. One of the setting moments of the disorders is the subluxation of a vertebra as a result of the disturbance in carrying ability of the spinal disc in case of spinal osteochondrosis. In this position the soft tissues of the spinal motional well innervated segment are stretched, which induces irritation in the segmental part of the spinal cord including vegetative nervous structures. Subluxation of a vertebra causes changes in the structures and in the microcirculation vessels which grow simultaneously and this permits supposing their interrelation.

  7. A surgery protocol for adult zebrafish spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Fang, Ping; Lin, Jin-Fei; Pan, Hong-Chao; Shen, Yan-Qin; Schachner, Melitta

    2012-09-20

    Adult zebrafish has a remarkable capability to recover from spinal cord injury, providing an excellent model for studying neuroregeneration. Here we list equipment and reagents, and give a detailed protocol for complete transection of the adult zebrafish spinal cord. In this protocol, potential problems and their solutions are described so that the zebrafish spinal cord injury model can be more easily and reproducibly performed. In addition, two assessments are introduced to monitor the success of the surgery and functional recovery: one test to assess free swimming capability and the other test to assess extent of neuroregeneration by in vivo anterograde axonal tracing. In the swimming behavior test, successful complete spinal cord transection is monitored by the inability of zebrafish to swim freely for 1 week after spinal cord injury, followed by the gradual reacquisition of full locomotor ability within 6 weeks after injury. As a morphometric correlate, anterograde axonal tracing allows the investigator to monitor the ability of regenerated axons to cross the lesion site and increasingly extend into the gray and white matter with time after injury, confirming functional recovery. This zebrafish model provides a paradigm for recovery from spinal cord injury, enabling the identification of pathways and components of neuroregeneration. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Spinal cord lesions and disability in Hispanics with multiple sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Amezcua, L.; Lerner, A.; Ledezma, K.; Conti, D.; Law, M.; Weiner, L.; Langer-Gould, A.

    2013-01-01

    Background Longitudinally extensive spinal cord lesions (LESCLs) are believed to occur predominantly with opticospinal multiple sclerosis (OSMS) and are associated with disability. Objective To describe the prevalence and patterns of spinal cord lesions in Hispanics with multiple sclerosis (MS) and OSMS and their association with disability. Methods Cross-sectional study of 164 patients with complete MRIs. Spinal cord was classified: LESCLs, scattered spinal cord lesions (sSCLs) or no spinal cord lesions (noSCLs). Clinical course was defined as classical MS or OSMS. Risk of disability (Expanded Disability Status Scale ≥4.0) was adjusted for age, disease duration and sex using logistic regression. Results 125/164(73%) MS patients had spinal cord lesions (sSCLs, 57%; LESCLs, 19%) but only 11(7%) had OSMS. LESCLs were associated with disability (p<0.0001), longer disease duration (p<0.0001) and MS (n=21 vs. n=10 OSMS; p<0.0001). LESCLs was associated with the greatest risk to disability (OR 7.3, 95% CIs1.9-26.5; p=0.003; sSCLs OR 2.5, 95% CIs0.9-7.1; p=0.09) compared with noSCLs. Conclusion LESCLs are more common than OSMS and are associated with worse disability even in patients with MS. These results suggest that LESCLs are a more important marker of disability in MS than OSMS and may be an early indicator of more aggressive disease in this population. PMID:23912723

  9. Descending bulbospinal pathways and recovery of respiratory motor function following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Vinit, Stéphane; Kastner, Anne

    2009-11-30

    The rodent respiratory system is a relevant model for study of the intrinsic post-lesion mechanisms of neuronal plasticity and resulting recovery after high cervical spinal cord injury. An unilateral cervical injury (hemisection, lateral section or contusion) interrupts unilaterally bulbospinal respiratory pathways to phrenic motor neurons innervating the diaphragm and leads to important respiratory defects on the injured side. However, the ipsilateral phrenic nerve exhibits a spontaneous and progressive recovery with post-lesion time. Shortly after a lateral injury, this partial recovery depends on the activation of contralateral pathways that cross the spinal midline caudal to the injury. Activation of these crossed phrenic pathways after the injury depends on the integrity of phrenic sensory afferents. These pathways are located principally in the lateral part of the spinal cord and involve 30% of the medullary respiratory neurons. By contrast, in chronic post-lesion conditions, the medial part of the spinal cord becomes sufficient to trigger substantial ipsilateral respiratory drive. Thus, after unilateral cervical spinal cord injury, respiratory reactivation is associated with a time-dependent anatomo-functional reorganization of the bulbospinal respiratory descending pathways, which represents an adaptative strategy for functional compensation.

  10. Intrinsically organized resting state networks in the human spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Yazhuo; Eippert, Falk; Beckmann, Christian F.; Andersson, Jesper; Finsterbusch, Jürgen; Büchel, Christian; Tracey, Irene; Brooks, Jonathan C. W.

    2014-01-01

    Spontaneous fluctuations in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signals of the brain have repeatedly been observed when no task or external stimulation is present. These fluctuations likely reflect baseline neuronal activity of the brain and correspond to functionally relevant resting-state networks (RSN). It is not known however, whether intrinsically organized and spatially circumscribed RSNs also exist in the spinal cord, the brain’s principal sensorimotor interface with the body. Here, we use recent advances in spinal fMRI methodology and independent component analysis to answer this question in healthy human volunteers. We identified spatially distinct RSNs in the human spinal cord that were clearly separated into dorsal and ventral components, mirroring the functional neuroanatomy of the spinal cord and likely reflecting sensory and motor processing. Interestingly, dorsal (sensory) RSNs were separated into right and left components, presumably related to ongoing hemibody processing of somatosensory information, whereas ventral (motor) RSNs were bilateral, possibly related to commissural interneuronal networks involved in central pattern generation. Importantly, all of these RSNs showed a restricted spatial extent along the spinal cord and likely conform to the spinal cord’s functionally relevant segmental organization. Although the spatial and temporal properties of the dorsal and ventral RSNs were found to be significantly different, these networks showed significant interactions with each other at the segmental level. Together, our data demonstrate that intrinsically highly organized resting-state fluctuations exist in the human spinal cord and are thus a hallmark of the entire central nervous system. PMID:25472845

  11. Spinal Cord Stimulation for Neuropathic Pain

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    Executive Summary Objective The objective of this health technology policy assessment was to determine the effectiveness of spinal cord stimulation (SCS) to manage chronic intractable neuropathic pain and to evaluate the adverse events and Ontario-specific economic profile of this technology. Clinical Need SCS is a reversible pain therapy that uses low-voltage electrical pulses to manage chronic, intractable neuropathic pain of the trunk or limbs. Neuropathic pain begins or is caused by damage or dysfunction to the nervous system and can be difficult to manage. The prevalence of neuropathic pain has been estimated at about 1.5% of the population in the United States and 1% of the population in the United Kingdom. These prevalence rates are generalizable to Canada. Neuropathic pain is extremely difficult to manage. People with symptoms that persist for at least 6 months or who have symptoms that last longer than expected for tissue healing or resolution of an underlying disease are considered to have chronic pain. Chronic pain is an emotional, social, and economic burden for those living with it. Depression, reduced quality of life (QOL), absenteeism from work, and a lower household income are positively correlated with chronic pain. Although the actual number is unknown, a proportion of people with chronic neuropathic pain fail to obtain pain relief from pharmacological therapies despite adequate and reasonable efforts to use them. These people are said to have intractable neuropathic pain, and they are the target population for SCS. The most common indication for SCS in North America is chronic intractable neuropathic pain due to failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS), a term that describes persistent leg or back and leg pain in patients who have had back or spine surgery. Neuropathic pain due to complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), which can develop in the distal aspect of a limb a minor injury, is another common indication. To a lesser extent, chronic intractable

  12. Homeostatic synaptic plasticity in developing spinal networks driven by excitatory GABAergic currents

    PubMed Central

    Wenner, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Homeostatic plasticity refers to mechanisms that the cell or network engage in order to homeostatically maintain a preset level of activity. These mechanisms include compensatory changes in cellular excitability, excitatory and inhibitory synaptic strength and are typically studied at a developmental stage when GABA or glycine are inhibitory. Here we focus on the expression of homeostatic plasticity in the chick embryo spinal cord at a stage when GABA is excitatory. When spinal activity is perturbed in the living embryo there are compensatory changes in postsynaptic AMPA receptors and in the driving force for GABAergic currents. These changes are triggered by reduced GABAA receptor signaling, which appears to be part of the sensing machinery for triggering homeostatic plasticity. We compare and contrast these findings to homeostatic plasticity expressed in spinal systems at different stages of development, and to the developing retina at a stage when GABA is depolarizing. PMID:23727439

  13. Distribution of Spinal Sensitization Evoked by Inflammatory Pain Using Local Spinal Cord Glucose Utilization Combined with 3H-Phorbol 12,13-Dibutyrate Binding in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Seiko, Yasuda; Kozo, Ishikawa; Yoshihiro, Matsumoto; Toru, Ariyoshi; Hironori, Sasaki; Yuika, Ida; Yasutake, Iwanaga; Hae-Kyu, Kim; Osamu, Nakanishi; Toshizo, Ishikawa

    2013-01-01

    Aims. Hyperalgesia following tissue injury is induced by plasticity in neurotransmission. Few investigators have considered the ascending input which activates the superficial of spinal cord. The aim was to examine neurotransmission and nociceptive processing in the spinal cord after mustard-oil (MO) injection. Both in vitro and in vivo autoradiographs were employed for neuronal activity and transmission in discrete spinal cord regions using the 14C-2-deoxyglucose method and 3H-phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate (3H-PDBu) binding sites. Methods. To quantify the hyperalgesia evoked by MO, the flinching was counted for 60 min after MO (20%, 50 μL) injection in Wistar rats. Simultaneous determination of 14C-2-deoxyglucose and 3H-PDBu binding was used for a direct observation of neuronal/metabolic changes and intracellular signaling in the spinal cord. Results. MO injection evoked an increase in flinching for 60 min. LSCGU significantly increased in the Rexed I-II with 3H-PDBu binding in the ipsilateral side of spinal cord. Discussion. We clearly demonstrated that the hyperalgesia is primarily relevant to increased neuronal activation with PKC activation in the Rexed I-II of the spinal cord. In addition, functional changes such as “neuronal plasticity” may result in increased neuronal excitability and a central sensitization. PMID:27335874

  14. 21 CFR 882.5850 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder....5850 Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal... paraplegic patient who has a complete transection of the spinal cord and who is unable to empty his or...

  15. 21 CFR 882.5850 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder....5850 Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal... paraplegic patient who has a complete transection of the spinal cord and who is unable to empty his or...

  16. 21 CFR 882.5850 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder....5850 Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal... paraplegic patient who has a complete transection of the spinal cord and who is unable to empty his or...

  17. 21 CFR 882.5850 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder....5850 Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal... paraplegic patient who has a complete transection of the spinal cord and who is unable to empty his or...

  18. 21 CFR 882.5850 - Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder....5850 Implanted spinal cord stimulator for bladder evacuation. (a) Identification. An implanted spinal... paraplegic patient who has a complete transection of the spinal cord and who is unable to empty his or...

  19. Anti-NGF Local Therapy for Autonomic Dysreflexia in Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-10-01

    bladder distention between spinal intact and spinal cord injury ...excitability of bladder afferent neurons in rats with spinal cord injury : a role of A-type voltage-gated potassium channels. 110th Annual Meeting AUA...Increased excitability of bladder afferent neurons in rats with spinal cord injury : a role of A-type voltage-gated potassium channels. 110th Annual

  20. Early radiation-induced endothelial cell loss and blood-spinal cord barrier breakdown in the rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Li, Yu-Qing; Chen, Paul; Jain, Vipan; Reilly, Raymond M; Wong, C Shun

    2004-02-01

    Using a rat spinal cord model, this study was designed to characterize radiation-induced vascular endothelial cell loss and its relationship to early blood-brain barrier disruption in the central nervous system. Adult rats were given a single dose of 0, 2, 8, 19.5, 22, 30 or 50 Gy to the cervical spinal cord. At various times up to 2 weeks after irradiation, the spinal cord was processed for histological and immunohistochemical analysis. Radiation-induced apoptosis was assessed by morphology and TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labeling combined with immunohistochemical markers for endothelial and glial cells. Image analysis was performed to determine endothelial cell and microvessel density using immunohistochemistry with endothelial markers, namely endothelial barrier antigen, glucose transporter isoform 1, laminin and zonula occludens 1. Blood-spinal cord barrier permeability was assessed using immunohistochemistry for albumin and (99m)Tc-diethylenetriamine pentaacetic acid as a vascular tracer. Endothelial cell proliferation was assessed using in vivo BrdU labeling. During the first 24 h after irradiation, apoptotic endothelial cells were observed in the rat spinal cord. The decrease in endothelial cell density at 24 h after irradiation was associated with an increase in albumin immunostaining around microvessels. The decrease in the number of endothelial cells persisted for 7 days and recovery of endothelial density was apparent by day 14. A similar pattern of blood-spinal cord barrier disruption and recovery of permeability was observed over the 2 weeks, and an increase in BrdU-labeled endothelial cells was seen at day 3. These results are consistent with an association between endothelial cell death and acute blood-spinal cord barrier disruption in the rat spinal cord after irradiation.

  1. Extramedullary haematopoiesis in thalassaemia major causing spinal cord compression.

    PubMed

    Chiam, Q L L; Lau, K K

    2007-04-01

    A 33-year-old, homozygous beta-thalassaemic, Jehovah witness man presented with subacute spinal cord compression secondary to extramedullary haematopoiesis within the thoracic spinal canal. In this case, MRI showed characteristic features of extramedullary haematopoiesis, leading to an early diagnosis.

  2. Fibrocartilagenous embolism: an unusual cause of spinal cord infarction.

    PubMed

    Yousef, O M; Appenzeller, P; Kornfeld, M

    1998-12-01

    A 14-year-old girl experienced sudden onset of weakness progressing rapidly to paralysis. She died 7 days later from a massive pulmonary thromboembolus. Autopsy revealed extensive infarction of the spinal cord with a fibrocartilaginous embolus of the corresponding segment of the anterior spinal artery.

  3. Surgical Outcomes of High-Grade Spinal Cord Gliomas

    PubMed Central

    Hida, Kazutoshi; Yano, Syunsuke; Aoyama, Takeshi; Koyanagi, Izumi; Houkin, Kiyohiro

    2015-01-01

    Study Design A retrospective study. Purpose The purpose of this study was to obtain useful information for establishing the guidelines for treating high-grade spinal cord gliomas. Overview of Literature The optimal management of high-grade spinal cord gliomas remains controversial. We report the outcomes of the surgical management of 14 high-grade spinal glioma. Methods We analyzed the outcomes of 14 patients with high-grade spinal cord gliomas who were surgically treated between 1989 and 2012. Survival was charted with the Kaplan-Meier plots and comparisons were made with the log-rank test. Results None of the patients with high-grade spinal cord gliomas underwent total resection. Subtotal resection was performed in two patients, partial resection was performed in nine patients, and open biopsy was performed in three patients. All patients underwent postoperative radiotherapy and six patients further underwent radiation cordotomy. The median survival time for patients with high-grade spinal cord gliomas was 15 months, with a 5-year survival rate of 22.2%. The median survival time for patients with World Health Organization grade III tumors was 25.5 months, whereas the median survival time for patients with glioblastoma multiforme was 12.5 months. Both univariate and multivariate Cox proportional hazards models demonstrated a significant effect only in the group that did not include cervical cord lesion as a factor associated with survival (p=0.04 and 0.03). Conclusions The surgical outcome of patients diagnosed with high-grade spinal cord gliomas remains poor. Notably, only the model which excluded cervical cord lesions as a factor significantly predicted survival. PMID:26713128

  4. In Vivo Measurement of Cervical Spinal Cord Deformation During Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury in a Rodent Model.

    PubMed

    Bhatnagar, Tim; Liu, Jie; Yung, Andrew; Cripton, Peter A; Kozlowski, Piotr; Oxland, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    The spinal cord undergoes physical deformation during traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI), which results in biological damage. This study demonstrates a novel approach, using magnetic resonance imaging and image registration techniques, to quantify the three-dimensional deformation of the cervical spinal cord in an in vivo rat model. Twenty-four male rats were subjected to one of two clinically relevant mechanisms of TSCI (i.e. contusion and dislocation) inside of a MR scanner using a novel apparatus, enabling imaging of the deformed spinal cords. The displacement fields demonstrated qualitative differences between injury mechanisms. Three-dimensional Lagrangian strain fields were calculated, and the results from the contusion injury mechanism were deemed most reliable. Strain field error was assessed using a Monte Carlo approach, which showed that simulated normal strain error experienced a bias, whereas shear strain error did not. In contusion injury, a large region of dorso-ventral compressive strain was observed under the impactor which extended into the ventral region of the spinal cord. High tensile lateral strains under the impactor and compressive lateral strains in the lateral white matter were also observed in contusion. The ability to directly observe and quantify in vivo spinal cord deformation informs our knowledge of the mechanics of TSCI.

  5. Cervical Cord-Canal Mismatch: A New Method for Identifying Predisposition to Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Nouri, Aria; Montejo, Julio; Sun, Xin; Virojanapa, Justin; Kolb, Luis E; Abbed, Khalid M; Cheng, Joseph

    2017-08-11

    The risk for spinal cord injuries (SCIs) ranging from devastating traumatic injuries, compression due to degenerative pathology, and neurapraxia is increased in patients with congenital spinal stenosis. Classical diagnostic criteria include an absolute anteroposterior diameter of <12-13mm or a Torg-Pavlov Ratio of <0.80-0.82; however, these factors do not take into account the size of the spinal cord, which varies across patients independent of canal size. Recent large MRI studies of population cohorts have allowed newer methods to emerge that account for both cord and canal size by measuring a spinal cord occupation ratio (SCOR). SCOR defined as ≥70% on mid-sagittal imaging, ≥80% on axial imaging appear to be effective methods of identifying cord-canal mismatch, but require further validation. Cord-Canal Size mismatch predisposes patients to SCI due to: (1) less space within the canal lowering the amount of degenerative changes needed for cord compression, (2) less CSF surrounding the spinal cord decreasing the ability to absorb kinetic forces directed at the spine. Patients with cord-canal mismatch have been reported to be at a substantially higher risk of traumatic SCI, and present with degenerative cervical myelopathy at a younger age than patients without cord-canal mismatch. However, neurological outcome after SCI has occurred does not appear to be different in patients with or without a cord-canal mismatch. Recognition that canal and cord size are both factors which predispose to SCI, support that cord-canal size mismatch rather than a narrow cervical canal in isolation should be viewed as the underlying mechanism predisposing to SCI. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  6. A case of real spinal cord injury without radiologic abnormality in a pediatric patient with spinal cord concussion.

    PubMed

    Nagasawa, Hiroki; Ishikawa, Kouhei; Takahashi, Ryosuke; Takeuchi, Ikuto; Jitsuiki, Kei; Ohsaka, Hiromichi; Omori, Kazuhiko; Yanagawa, Youichi

    2017-01-01

    Real spinal cord injury without radiologic abnormality (SCIWORA) is a rare clinical entity. The patient was a 13-year-old girl whose body was overturned anteriorly after crashing her bicycle into a curb. Following the accident, in which her neck and upper back hit the ground, she could not move due to paralysis. On arrival, she had paresis of the bilateral upper extremities and experienced a painful sensation when her upper extremities were touched. Cervical roentgenography and whole-body computed tomography revealed no traumatic lesions in either the intracranium or the cervical bone. Urgent spinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed no significant spinal cord lesions or spinal canal stenosis. She was put on complete bed rest with a cervical collar. On the 2nd hospital day (24 h after the accident), her motor weakness had almost completely subsided, and she felt only mild dysesthesia in both forearms. Roentgenography revealed no instability. Her motor weakness completely recovered on the third day after accident and she was diagnosed with spinal cord concussion. The present case study, in which MRI was performed, showed that an immediate improvement was obtained in a patient who experienced real SCIWORA. The importance of not only spinal cord lesions, but also perispinal soft tissue injury on MRI has been emphasized for predicting patient outcomes. Accordingly, immediate MRI is essential for evaluating patients with signs and symptoms of spinal cord injury, even when plain neck roentgenography and cervical CT are negative.

  7. Spinal Cord Tolerance for Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy

    SciTech Connect

    Sahgal, Arjun; Ma Lijun; Gibbs, Iris; Gerszten, Peter C.; Ryu, Sam; Soltys, Scott; Weinberg, Vivian; Wong Shun; Chang, Eric; Fowler, Jack; Larson, David A.

    2010-06-01

    Purpose: Dosimetric data are reported for five cases of radiation-induced myelopathy after stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) to spinal tumors. Analysis per the biologically effective dose (BED) model was performed. Methods and Materials: Five patients with radiation myelopathy were compared to a subset of 19 patients with no radiation myelopathy post-SBRT. In all patients, the thecal sac was contoured to represent the spinal cord, and doses to the maximum point, 0.1-, 1-, 2-, and 5-cc volumes, were analyzed. The mean normalized 2-Gy-equivalent BEDs (nBEDs), calculated using an alpha/beta value of 2 for late toxicity with units Gy 2/2, were compared using the t test and analysis of variance test. Results: Radiation myelopathy was observed at the maximum point with doses of 25.6 Gy in two fractions, 30.9 Gy in three fractions, and 14.8, 13.1, and 10.6 Gy in one fraction. Overall, there was a significant interaction between patient subsets and volume based on the nBED (p = 0.0003). Given individual volumes, a significant difference was observed for the mean maximum point nBED (p = 0.01). Conclusions: The maximum point dose should be respected for spine SBRT. For single-fraction SBRT 10 Gy to a maximum point is safe, and up to five fractions an nBED of 30 to 35 Gy 2/2 to the thecal sac also poses a low risk of radiation myelopathy.

  8. Inflammogenesis of Secondary Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Anwar, M. Akhtar; Al Shehabi, Tuqa S.; Eid, Ali H.

    2016-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) and spinal infarction lead to neurological complications and eventually to paraplegia or quadriplegia. These extremely debilitating conditions are major contributors to morbidity. Our understanding of SCI has certainly increased during the last decade, but remains far from clear. SCI consists of two defined phases: the initial impact causes primary injury, which is followed by a prolonged secondary injury consisting of evolving sub-phases that may last for years. The underlying pathophysiological mechanisms driving this condition are complex. Derangement of the vasculature is a notable feature of the pathology of SCI. In particular, an important component of SCI is the ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) that leads to endothelial dysfunction and changes in vascular permeability. Indeed, together with endothelial cell damage and failure in homeostasis, ischemia reperfusion injury triggers full-blown inflammatory cascades arising from activation of residential innate immune cells (microglia and astrocytes) and infiltrating leukocytes (neutrophils and macrophages). These inflammatory cells release neurotoxins (proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, free radicals, excitotoxic amino acids, nitric oxide (NO)), all of which partake in axonal and neuronal deficit. Therefore, our review considers the recent advances in SCI mechanisms, whereby it becomes clear that SCI is a heterogeneous condition. Hence, this leads towards evidence of a restorative approach based on monotherapy with multiple targets or combinatorial treatment. Moreover, from evaluation of the existing literature, it appears that there is an urgent requirement for multi-centered, randomized trials for a large patient population. These clinical studies would offer an opportunity in stratifying SCI patients at high risk and selecting appropriate, optimal therapeutic regimens for personalized medicine. PMID:27147970

  9. [Mortality structure following spine and spinal cord injuries].

    PubMed

    Bazilevskaia, Z V; Golovnykh, L L; Kirkinskaia, T A

    1980-01-01

    In a group of 520 patients with injury to the spine and spinal cord 125 died within 10 years. The highest fatality rate (76.0 +/0 3.8) is recorded in the first year after the injury. In the following 10 years the fatality rate was uniform and ranged between 1.6 and 4.1%. This value increases with the patient's age, the severity of the spinal cord injury, and the degree of damage to the spinal ligamento-bursal apparatus. Among the total number of injured, 76% have a survival period of more than 10 years.

  10. Activity-Based Therapies To Promote Forelimb Use after a Cervical Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Haining; MacArthur, Linda; McAtee, Marietta; Hockenbury, Nicole; Tidwell, J. Lille; McHugh, Brian; Mansfield, Kevin; Finn, Tom; Hamers, Frank P.T.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Significant interest exists in strategies for improving forelimb function following spinal cord injury. We investigated the effect of enriched housing combined with skilled training on the recovery of skilled and automatic forelimb function after a cervical spinal cord injury in adult rats. All animals were pretrained in skilled reaching, gridwalk crossing, and overground locomotion. Some received a cervical over-hemisection lesion at C4-5, interrupting the right side of the spinal cord and dorsal columns bilaterally, and were housed in standard housing alone or enriched environments with daily training. A subset of animals received rolipram to promote neuronal plasticity. Animals were tested weekly for 4 weeks to measure reaching, errors on the gridwalk, locomotion, and vertical exploration. Biotinylated dextran amine was injected into the cortex to label the corticospinal tract. Enriched environments/daily training significantly increased the number and success of left reaches compared to standard housing. Animals also made fewer errors on the gridwalk, a measure of coordinated forelimb function. However, there were no significant improvements in forelimb use during vertical exploration or locomotion. Likewise, rolipram did not improve any of the behaviors tested. Both enriched housing and rolipram increased plasticity of the corticospinal tract rostral to the lesion. These studies indicate that skilled training after a cervical spinal cord injury improves recovery of skilled forelimb use (reaching) and coordinated limb function (gridwalk) but does not improve automatic forelimb function (locomotion and vertical exploration). These studies suggest that rehabilitating forelimb function after spinal cord injury will require separate strategies for descending and segmental pathways. PMID:19317604

  11. Peripheral nerve grafts support regeneration after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Côté, Marie-Pascale; Amin, Arthi A; Tom, Veronica J; Houle, John D

    2011-04-01

    Traumatic insults to the spinal cord induce both immediate mechanical damage and subsequent tissue degeneration leading to a substantial physiological, biochemical, and functional reorganization of the spinal cord. Various spinal cord injury (SCI) models have shown the adaptive potential of the spinal cord and its limitations in the case of total or partial absence of supraspinal influence. Meaningful recovery of function after SCI will most likely result from a combination of therapeutic strategies, including neural tissue transplants, exogenous neurotrophic factors, elimination of inhibitory molecules, functional sensorimotor training, and/or electrical stimulation of paralyzed muscles or spinal circuits. Peripheral nerve grafts provide a growth-permissive substratum and local neurotrophic factors to enhance the regenerative effort of axotomized neurons when grafted into the site of injury. Regenerating axons can be directed via the peripheral nerve graft toward an appropriate target, but they fail to extend beyond the distal graft-host interface because of the deposition of growth inhibitors at the site of SCI. One method to facilitate the emergence of axons from a graft into the spinal cord is to digest the chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans that are associated with a glial scar. Importantly, regenerating axons that do exit the graft are capable of forming functional synaptic contacts. These results have been demonstrated in acute injury models in rats and cats and after a chronic injury in rats and have important implications for our continuing efforts to promote structural and functional repair after SCI.

  12. SIMS and MALDI MS imaging of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Monroe, Eric B.; Annangudi, Suresh P.; Hatcher, Nathan G.; Gutstein, Howard B.; Rubakhin, Stanislav S.; Sweedler, Jonathan V.

    2009-01-01

    The application of mass spectrometry to imaging, or MS imaging (MSI), allows for the direct investigation of tissue sections to identify biological compounds and determine their spatial distribution. We present an approach to MSI that combines secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) and MALDI MS for the imaging and analysis of rat spinal cord sections, thereby enhancing the chemical coverage obtained from an MSI experiment. The spinal cord is organized into discrete, anatomically defined areas that include motor and sensory networks composed of chemically diverse cells. The MSI data presented here reveal the spatial distribution of multiple phospholipids, proteins, and neuropeptides obtained within single, 20-μm sections of rat spinal cord. Analyte identities are initially determined by primary mass match and confirmed in follow-up experiments using LC MS/MS from extracts of adjacent spinal cord sections. Additionally, a regional analysis of differentially localized signals serves to rapidly screen compounds of varying intensities across multiple spinal regions. These MSI analyses reveal new insights into the chemical architecture of the spinal cord and set the stage for future imaging studies of the chemical changes induced by pain, anesthesia, and drug tolerance. PMID:18712768

  13. Cortical sensory map rearrangement after spinal cord injury: fMRI responses linked to Nogo signalling.

    PubMed

    Endo, Toshiki; Spenger, Christian; Tominaga, Teiji; Brené, Stefan; Olson, Lars

    2007-11-01

    Cortical sensory maps can reorganize in the adult brain in an experience-dependent manner. We monitored somatosensory cortical reorganization after sensory deafferentation using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in rats subjected to complete transection of the mid-thoracic spinal cord. Cortical representation in response to spared forelimb stimulation was observed to enlarge and invade adjacent sensory-deprived hind limb territory in the primary somatosensory cortex as early as 3 days after injury. Functional MRI also demonstrated long-term cortical plasticity accompanied by increased thalamic activation. To support the notion that alterations of cortical neuronal circuitry after spinal cord injury may underlie the fMRI changes, we quantified transcriptional activities of several genes related to cortical plasticity including the Nogo receptor (NgR), its co-receptor LINGO-1 and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), using in situ hybridization. We demonstrate that NgR and LINGO-1 are down-regulated specifically in cortical areas deprived of sensory input and in adjacent cortex from 1 day after injury, while BDNF is up-regulated. Our results demonstrate that cortical neurons react to sensory deprivation by decreasing transcriptional activities of genes encoding the Nogo receptor components in the sensory deprived and the anatomically adjacent non-deprived area. Combined with the BDNF up-regulation, these changes presumably allow structural changes in the neuropil. Our observations therefore suggest an involvement of Nogo signalling in cortical activity-dependent plasticity in the somatosensory system. In spinal cord injury, cortical reorganization as shown here can become a disadvantage, much like the situation in amblyopia or phantom sensation. Successful strategies to repair sensory pathways at the spinal cord level may not lead to proper reestablishment of cortical connections, once deprived hind limb cortical areas have been reallocated to forelimb

  14. Management of severe spinal cord injury following hyperbaric exposure.

    PubMed

    Mathew, Bruce; Laden, Gerard

    2015-09-01

    There is an increasing body of evidence that drainage of lumbar cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) improves functional neurological outcome after reperfusion injury to the spinal cord that occasionally follows aortic reconstructive surgery. This beneficial effect is considered owing to lowering of the CSF pressure thereby normalising spinal cord blood flow and reducing the 'secondary' cord injury caused by vascular congestion and cord swelling in the relatively confined spinal canal. Whilst lacking definitive proof, there are convincing randomised controlled trials (RCTs), cohort data and systematic reviews supporting this intervention. The therapeutic window for lumbar CSF drainage requires further elucidation; however, it appears to be days rather than hours post insult. We contend that the same benefit is likely to be achieved following other primary spinal cord injuries that cause cord swelling and elicit the 'secondary' injury. Traditionally the concept of CSF drainage has been considered more applicable to the brain as contained in a 'closed box' by lowering intracranial pressure (ICP) to improve cerebral perfusion pressure (CPP). The control of CPP is intended to limit 'secondary' brain injury and is a key concept of brain injury management. Using microdialysis in the spinal cords of trauma patients, it has been shown that intraspinal pressure (ISP) needs to be kept below 20 mmHg and spinal cord perfusion pressure (SCPP) above 70 mmHg to avoid biochemical evidence of secondary cord damage. Vasopressor have also been used in spinal cord injury to improve perfusion, however complications are common, typically cardiac in nature, and require very careful monitoring; the evidence supporting this approach is notably less convincing. Decompression illness (DCI) of the spinal cord is treated with recompression, hyperbaric oxygen, various medications designed to reduce the inflammatory response and fluid administration to normalise blood pressure and haematocrit. These

  15. Enrichment of spinal cord cell cultures with motoneurons

    PubMed Central

    1978-01-01

    Spinal cord cell cultures contain several types of neurons. Two methods are described for enriching such cultures with motoneurons (defined here simply as cholinergic cells that are capable of innervating muscle). In the first method, 7-day embryonic chick spinal cord neurons were separated according to size by 1 g velocity sedimentation. It is assumed that cholinergic motoneurons are among the largest cells present at this stage. The spinal cords were dissociated vigorously so that 95-98% of the cells in the initial suspension were isolated from one another. Cells in leading fractions (large cell fractions: LCFs) contain about seven times as much choline acetyltransferase (CAT) activity per unit cytoplasm as do cells in trailing fractions (small cell fractions: SCFs). Muscle cultures seeded with LCFs develop 10-70 times as much CAT as cultures seeded with SCFs and six times as much CAT as cultures seeded with control (unfractionated) spinal cord cells. More than 20% of the large neurons in LCF-muscle cultures innervate nearby myotubes. In the second method, neurons were gently dissociated from 4-day embryonic spinal cords and maintained in vitro. This approach is based on earlier observations that cholinergic neurons are among the first cells to withdraw form the mitotic cycle in the developing chick embryo (Hamburger, V. 1948. J. Comp. Neurol. 88:221- 283; and Levi-Montalcini, R. 1950. J. Morphol. 86:253-283). 4-Day spinal cord-muscle cultures develop three times as much CAT as do 7-day spinal cord-muscle plates, prepared in the same (gentle) manner. More than 50% of the relatively large 4-day neurons innervate nearby myotubes. Thus, both methods are useful first steps toward the complete isolation of motoneurons. Both methods should facilitate study of the development of cholinergic neurons and of nerve-muscle synapse formation. PMID:566275

  16. Localization of Brain Natriuretic Peptide Immunoreactivity in Rat Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Abdelalim, Essam M.; Bellier, Jean-Pierre; Tooyama, Ikuo

    2016-01-01

    Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) exerts its functions through NP receptors. Recently, BNP has been shown to be involved in a wide range of functions. Previous studies reported BNP expression in the sensory afferent fibers in the dorsal horn (DH) of the spinal cord. However, BNP expression and function in the neurons of the central nervous system are still controversial. Therefore, in this study, we investigated BNP expression in the rat spinal cord in detail using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry. RT-PCR analysis showed that BNP mRNA was present in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion (DRG). BNP immunoreactivity was observed in different structures of the spinal cord, including the neuronal cell bodies and neuronal processes. BNP immunoreactivity was observed in the DH of the spinal cord and in the neurons of the intermediate column (IC) and ventral horn (VH). Double-immunolabeling showed a high level of BNP expression in the afferent fibers (laminae I–II) labeled with calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), suggesting BNP involvement in sensory function. In addition, BNP was co-localized with CGRP and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) in the motor neurons of the VH. Together, these results indicate that BNP is expressed in sensory and motor systems of the spinal cord, suggesting its involvement in several biological actions on sensory and motor neurons via its binding to NP receptor-A (NPR-A) and/or NP receptor-B (NPR-B) at the spinal cord level. PMID:27994541

  17. Chronic complications of spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Sezer, Nebahat; Akkuş, Selami; Uğurlu, Fatma Gülçin

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a serious medical condition that causes functional, psychological and socioeconomic disorder. Therefore, patients with SCI experience significant impairments in various aspects of their life. The goals of rehabilitation and other treatment approaches in SCI are to improve functional level, decrease secondary morbidity and enhance health-related quality of life. Acute and long-term secondary medical complications are common in patients with SCI. However, chronic complications especially further negatively impact on patients’ functional independence and quality of life. Therefore, prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of chronic secondary complications in patients with SCI is critical for limiting these complications, improving survival, community participation and health-related quality of life. The management of secondary chronic complications of SCI is also important for SCI specialists, families and caregivers as well as patients. In this paper, we review data about common secondary long-term complications after SCI, including respiratory complications, cardiovascular complications, urinary and bowel complications, spasticity, pain syndromes, pressure ulcers, osteoporosis and bone fractures. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of risk factors, signs, symptoms, prevention and treatment approaches for secondary long-term complications in patients with SCI. PMID:25621208

  18. Cardiovascular dysfunction following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Partida, Elizabeth; Mironets, Eugene; Hou, Shaoping; Tom, Veronica J.

    2016-01-01

    Both sensorimotor and autonomic dysfunctions often occur after spinal cord injury (SCI). Particularly, a high thoracic or cervical SCI interrupts supraspinal vasomotor pathways and results in disordered hemodynamics due to deregulated sympathetic outflow. As a result of the reduced sympathetic activity, patients with SCI may experience hypotension, cardiac dysrhythmias, and hypothermia post-injury. In the chronic phase, changes within the CNS and blood vessels lead to orthostatic hypotension and life-threatening autonomic dysreflexia (AD). AD is characterized by an episodic, massive sympathetic discharge that causes severe hypertension associated with bradycardia. The syndrome is often triggered by unpleasant visceral or sensory stimuli below the injury level. Currently the only treatments are palliative – once a stimulus elicits AD, pharmacological vasodilators are administered to help reduce the spike in arterial blood pressure. However, a more effective means would be to mitigate AD development by attenuating contributing mechanisms, such as the reorganization of intraspinal circuits below the level of injury. A better understanding of the neuropathophysiology underlying cardiovascular dysfunction after SCI is essential to better develop novel therapeutic approaches to restore hemodynamic performance. PMID:27073353

  19. Spinal cord involvement in patients with cirrhosis.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Storti, Monica; Lochner, Piergiorgio; Tezzon, Frediano; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2014-03-14

    A severe spinal cord involvement may rarely occur in patients with cirrhosis and other chronic liver diseases; this complication is usually associated with overt liver failure and surgical or spontaneous porto-systemic shunt. Hepatic myelopathy (HM) is characterized by progressive weakness and spasticity of the lower extremities, while sensory and sphincter disturbances have rarely been described and are usually less important. The diagnosis is assigned in the appropriate clinical setting on clinical grounds after the exclusion of other clinical entities leading to spastic paraparesis. Magnetic resonance imaging is often unremarkable; however, also intracerebral corticospinal tract abnormalities have been reported recently. The study of motor evoked potentials may disclose central conduction abnormalities even before HM is clinically manifest. HM responds poorly to blood ammonia-lowering and other conservative medical therapy. Liver transplantation represents a potentially definitive treatment for HM in patients with decompensated cirrhosis of Child-Pugh B and C grades. Other surgical treatment options in HM include surgical ligation, shunt reduction, or occlusion by interventional procedures.

  20. Spinal cord involvement in patients with cirrhosis

    PubMed Central

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Storti, Monica; Lochner, Piergiorgio; Tezzon, Frediano; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2014-01-01

    A severe spinal cord involvement may rarely occur in patients with cirrhosis and other chronic liver diseases; this complication is usually associated with overt liver failure and surgical or spontaneous porto-systemic shunt. Hepatic myelopathy (HM) is characterized by progressive weakness and spasticity of the lower extremities, while sensory and sphincter disturbances have rarely been described and are usually less important. The diagnosis is assigned in the appropriate clinical setting on clinical grounds after the exclusion of other clinical entities leading to spastic paraparesis. Magnetic resonance imaging is often unremarkable; however, also intracerebral corticospinal tract abnormalities have been reported recently. The study of motor evoked potentials may disclose central conduction abnormalities even before HM is clinically manifest. HM responds poorly to blood ammonia-lowering and other conservative medical therapy. Liver transplantation represents a potentially definitive treatment for HM in patients with decompensated cirrhosis of Child-Pugh B and C grades. Other surgical treatment options in HM include surgical ligation, shunt reduction, or occlusion by interventional procedures. PMID:24627593

  1. Venous Thromboembolism Following Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Teasell, R.W.; Hsieh, T.J.; Aubut, JA. L.; Eng, J.J.; Krassioukov, A.; Tu, L.

    2011-01-01

    Objective To systematically review the published literature on the treatment of deep venous thromboembolism post-spinal cord injury (SCI). Data Sources MEDLINE/Pubmed, CINAHL, EMBASE, and PsycINFO databases were searched for articles addressing the treatment of deep venous thromboembolism post-SCI. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were assessed for methodologic quality using the Physiotherapy Evidence Database Scale, while non-RCTs were assessed using the Downs and Black evaluation tool. Study Selection Studies included RCTs, non-RCTS, cohort, case-control, case series, pre-post, and postinterventional studies. Case studies were included only when no other studies were available. Data Extraction Data extracted included demographics, the nature of the study intervention, and study results. Data Synthesis Levels of evidence were assigned to the interventions using a modified Sackett scale. Conclusions Twenty-three studies met inclusion criteria. Thirteen studies examined various pharmacologic interventions for the treatment or prevention of deep venous thrombosis in SCI patients. There was strong evidence to support the use of low molecular weight heparin in reducing venous thrombosis events, and a higher adjusted dose of unfractionated heparin was found to be more effective than 5000 units administered every 12 hours, although bleeding complication was more common. Nonpharmacologic treatments were also reviewed, but again limited evidence was found to support these treatments. PMID:19236977

  2. Stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kan, E M; Ling, E A; Lu, J

    2010-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) damages axons and disrupts myelination interrupting sensory and motor neuronal transmission to and from the brain. Patients suffering from SCI although continue to survive, are often left chronically disabled and with no promise of a cure. Advances in stem cell biology has opened up doors for the use of human embryonic, adult neural and induced pluripotent stem cell strategies for SCI. Despite great promise from animal research, clinical trials have been limited and the jury is still out on its safety and efficacy. This review discusses the advantages and disadvantages of the various stem cell types, barriers hindering translation from animal to humans, and the need for established guidelines for standardization of clinical trials ensuring subsequent implementation. Ultimately, unrealistic expectations of stem cell therapy (SCT) as the elixir for SCI should be managed. The success of SCT for SCI lies in the network of research scientists, medical professionals and patients working cooperatively to build up a knowledge-intensive platform for a comprehensive risk-benefit assessment of SCT for SCI.

  3. Osteoporosis in individuals with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Bauman, William A; Cardozo, Christopher P

    2015-02-01

    The pathophysiology, clinical considerations, and relevant experimental findings with regard to osteoporosis in individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) will be discussed. The bone loss that occurs acutely after more neurologically motor complete SCI is unique for its sublesional skeletal distribution and rate, at certain skeletal sites approaching 1% of bone mineral density per week, and its resistance to currently available treatments. The areas of high bone loss include the distal femur, proximal tibia, and more distal boney sites. Evidence from a study performed in monozygotic twins discordant for SCI indicates that sublesional bone loss in the twin with SCI increases for several decades, strongly suggesting that the heightened net bone loss after SCI may persist for an extended period of time. The increased frequency of fragility fracture after paralysis will be discussed, and a few risk factors for such fractures after SCI will be examined. Because vitamin D deficiency, regardless of disability, is a relevant consideration for bone health, as well as an easily reversible condition, the increased prevalence of and treatment target values for vitamin D in this deficiency state in the SCI population will be reviewed. Pharmacological and mechanical approaches to preserving bone integrity in persons with acute and chronic SCI will be reviewed, with emphasis placed on efficacy and practicality. Emerging osteoanabolic agents that improve functioning of WNT/β-catenin signaling after paralysis will be introduced as therapeutic interventions that may hold promise.

  4. New rehabilitation interventions in spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kirshblum, Steven

    2004-01-01

    Progress in the care of people with spinal cord injury (SCI) spans every aspect, from research in neuroregeneration to pharmacologic interventions. This article focuses on advances in rehabilitation interventions, which have employed bioengineering, computerization, and advanced therapeutic techniques. These interventions are being applied to functional deficits of the bladder, bowel, upper extremities, and respiratory system, as well as to improvements in ambulation and mobility. Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is being used to augment the function of the lower extremities, the upper extremities (Freehand System), and the bowel and bladder (Vocare System). Tendon transfer is a reconstructive technique used to improve upper extremity function; it is sometimes combined with FES. Body weight-supported treadmill training is being used to improve ambulation in people with incomplete SCI, and advances in wheelchair technology are expanding options for mobility. Cushion design and pressure mapping are modalities being used to reduce the high risk for pressure ulcers in the SCI population. Research on shoulder stressors is being applied to transfer techniques, exercise regimens, adaptive equipment and wheelchair mechanics to minimize shoulder pain, another common complication. The effectiveness of rehabilitation interventions needs to be documented by evidence-based research. Researchers are focusing on the identification of outcomes measures that will form the basis for established standards of care for individuals with SCI. Perhaps the combination of conventional and newer therapies may enhance neurological recovery. Well-designed studies are needed before we can make this determination.

  5. Spinal meningioma: relationship between degree of cord compression and outcome.

    PubMed

    Davies, Simon; Gregson, Barbara; Mitchell, Patrick

    2017-04-01

    The aim of this study was to find the relationships between the degree of cord compression as seen on MRIs with persisting cord atrophy after decompression and patient outcomes in spinal meningiomas. We undertook a retrospective analysis of 31 patients' pre- and postoperative MRIs, preoperative functional status and their outcomes at follow-up. The following metrics were analysed; percentage cord area at maximum compression, percentage tumour occupancy and percentage cord occupancy. These were then compared with outcome as measured by the Nurick scale. Of the 31 patients, 27 (87%) had thoracic meningiomas, 3 (10%) cervical and 1 (3%) cervicothoracic. The meningiomas were pathologically classified as grade 1 (29) or grade 2 (2) according to the WHO classification. The average remaining cord cross-sectional area was 61% of the estimated original value. The average tumour occupancy of the canal was 72%. The average cord occupancy of the spinal canal at maximum compression was 20%. No correlation between cord cross-section area and Nurick Scale was seen. On the postoperative scan, the average cord area had increased to 84%. No correlation was seen between this value and outcome. We found that cross-section area measurements on MRI scans have no obvious relationship with function before or after surgery. This is a base for future research into the mechanism of cord recovery and other compressive cord conditions.

  6. Spinal cord compression in two related Ursus arctos horribilis.

    PubMed

    Thomovsky, Stephanie A; Chen, Annie V; Roberts, Greg R; Schmidt, Carrie E; Layton, Arthur W

    2012-09-01

    Two 15-yr-old grizzly bear littermates were evaluated within 9 mo of each other with the symptom of acute onset of progressive paraparesis and proprioceptive ataxia. The most significant clinical examination finding was pelvic limb paresis in both bears. Magnetic resonance examinations of both bears showed cranial thoracic spinal cord compression. The first bear had left-sided extradural, dorsolateral spinal cord compression at T3-T4. Vertebral canal stenosis was also observed at T2-T3. Images of the second bear showed lateral spinal cord compression from T2-T3 to T4-T5. Intervertebral disk disease and associated spinal cord compression was also observed at T2-T3 and T3-T4. One grizzly bear continued to deteriorate despite reduced exercise, steroid, and antibiotic therapy. The bear was euthanized, and a necropsy was performed. The postmortem showed a spinal ganglion cyst that caused spinal cord compression at the level of T3-T4. Wallerian-like degeneration was observed from C3-T6. The second bear was prescribed treatment that consisted of a combination of reduced exercise and steroid therapy. He continued to deteriorate with these medical therapies and was euthanized 4 mo after diagnosis. A necropsy showed hypertrophy and protrusion of the dorsal longitudinal ligament at T2-T3 and T3-T4, with resulting spinal cord compression in this region. Wallerian-like degeneration was observed from C2-L1. This is one of few case reports that describes paresis in bears. It is the only case report, to the authors' knowledge, that describes spinal magnetic resonance imaging findings in a grizzly bear and also the only report that describes a cranial thoracic myelopathy in two related grizzly bears with neurologic signs.

  7. Spinal Cord Tolerance in the Age of Spinal Radiosurgery: Lessons From Preclinical Studies

    SciTech Connect

    Medin, Paul M.; Boike, Thomas P.

    2011-04-01

    Clinical implementation of spinal radiosurgery has increased rapidly in recent years, but little is known regarding human spinal cord tolerance to single-fraction irradiation. In contrast, preclinical studies in single-fraction spinal cord tolerance have been ongoing since the 1970s. The influences of field length, dose rate, inhomogeneous dose distributions, and reirradiation have all been investigated. This review summarizes literature regarding single-fraction spinal cord tolerance in preclinical models with an emphasis on practical clinical significance. The outcomes of studies that incorporate uniform irradiation are surprisingly consistent among multiple small- and large-animal models. Extensive investigation of inhomogeneous dose distributions in the rat has demonstrated a significant dose-volume effect while preliminary results from one pig study are contradictory. Preclinical spinal cord dose-volume studies indicate that dose distribution is more critical than the volume irradiated suggesting that neither dose-volume histogram analysis nor absolute volume constraints are effective in predicting complications. Reirradiation data are sparse, but results from guinea pig, rat, and pig studies are consistent with the hypothesis that the spinal cord possesses a large capacity for repair. The mechanisms behind the phenomena observed in spinal cord studies are not readily explained and the ability of dose response models to predict outcomes is variable underscoring the need for further investigation. Animal studies provide insight into the phenomena and mechanisms of radiosensitivity but the true significance of animal studies can only be discovered through clinical trials.

  8. Intraspinal AAV Injections Immediately Rostral to a Thoracic Spinal Cord Injury Site Efficiently Transduces Neurons in Spinal Cord and Brain

    PubMed Central

    Klaw, Michelle C; Xu, Chen; Tom, Veronica J

    2013-01-01

    In the vast majority of studies utilizing adeno-associated virus (AAV) in central nervous system applications, including those published with spinal cord injury (SCI) models, AAV has been administered at the level of the cell body of neurons targeted for genetic modification, resulting in transduction of neurons in the vicinity of the injection site. However, as SCI interrupts many axon tracts, it may be more beneficial to transduce a diverse pool of supraspinal neurons. We determined if descending axons severed by SCI are capable of retrogradely transporting AAV to remotely transduce a variety of brain regions. Different AAV serotypes encoding the reporter green fluorescent protein (GFP) were injected into gray and white matter immediately rostral to a spinal transection site. This resulted in the transduction of thousands of neurons within the spinal cord and in multiple regions within the brainstem that project to spinal cord. In addition, we established that different serotypes had disparate regional specificity and that AAV5 transduced the most brain and spinal cord neurons. This is the first demonstration that retrograde transport of AAV by axons severed by SCI is an effective means to transduce a collection of supraspinal neurons. Thus, we identify a novel, minimally invasive means to transduce a variety of neuronal populations within both the spinal cord and the brain following SCI. This paradigm to broadly distribute viral vectors has the potential to be an important component of a combinatorial strategy to promote functional axonal regeneration. PMID:23881451

  9. Restoring tactile awareness through the rubber hand illusion in cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Lenggenhager, Bigna; Scivoletto, Giorgio; Molinari, Marco; Pazzaglia, Mariella

    2013-10-01

    Bodily sensations are an important component of corporeal awareness. Spinal cord injury can leave affected body parts insentient and unmoving, leading to specific disturbances in the mental representation of one's own body and the sense of self. Here, we explored how illusions induced by multisensory stimulation influence immediate sensory signals and tactile awareness in patients with spinal cord injuries. The rubber hand illusion paradigm was applied to 2 patients with chronic and complete spinal cord injury of the sixth cervical spine, with severe somatosensory impairments in 2 of 5 fingers. Both patients experienced a strong illusion of ownership of the rubber hand during synchronous, but not asynchronous, stroking. They also, spontaneously reported basic tactile sensations in their previously numb fingers. Tactile awareness from seeing the rubber hand was enhanced by progressively increasing the stimulation duration. Multisensory illusions directly and specifically modulate the reemergence of sensory memories and enhance tactile sensation, despite (or as a result of) prior deafferentation. When sensory inputs are lost, and are later illusorily regained, the brain updates a coherent body image even several years after the body has become permanently unable to feel. This particular example of neural plasticity represents a significant opportunity to strengthen the sense of the self and the feelings of embodiment in patients with spinal cord injury.

  10. Spinal microcircuits comprising dI3 interneurons are necessary for motor functional recovery following spinal cord transection

    PubMed Central

    Bui, Tuan V; Stifani, Nicolas; Akay, Turgay; Brownstone, Robert M

    2016-01-01

    The spinal cord has the capacity to coordinate motor activities such as locomotion. Following spinal transection, functional activity can be regained, to a degree, following motor training. To identify microcircuits involved in this recovery, we studied a population of mouse spinal interneurons known to receive direct afferent inputs and project to intermediate and ventral regions of the spinal cord. We demonstrate that while dI3 interneurons are not necessary for normal locomotor activity, locomotor circuits rhythmically inhibit them and dI3 interneurons can activate these circuits. Removing dI3 interneurons from spinal microcircuits by eliminating their synaptic transmission left locomotion more or less unchanged, but abolished functional recovery, indicating that dI3 interneurons are a necessary cellular substrate for motor system plasticity following transection. We suggest that dI3 interneurons compare inputs from locomotor circuits with sensory afferent inputs to compute sensory prediction errors that then modify locomotor circuits to effect motor recovery. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21715.001 PMID:27977000

  11. Locomotor impact of beneficial or nonbeneficial H-reflex conditioning after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yi; Chen, Lu; Liu, Rongliang; Wang, Yu; Wolpaw, Jonathan R.

    2013-01-01

    When new motor learning changes neurons and synapses in the spinal cord, it may affect previously learned behaviors that depend on the same spinal neurons and synapses. To explore these effects, we used operant conditioning to strengthen or weaken the right soleus H-reflex pathway in rats in which a right spinal cord contusion had impaired locomotion. When up-conditioning increased the H-reflex, locomotion improved. Steps became longer, and step-cycle asymmetry (i.e., limping) disappeared. In contrast, when down-conditioning decreased the H-reflex, locomotion did not worsen. Steps did not become shorter, and asymmetry did not increase. Electromyographic and kinematic analyses explained how H-reflex increase improved locomotion and why H-reflex decrease did not further impair it. Although the impact of up-conditioning or down-conditioning on the H-reflex pathway was still present during locomotion, only up-conditioning affected the soleus locomotor burst. Additionally, compensatory plasticity apparently prevented the weaker H-reflex pathway caused by down-conditioning from weakening the locomotor burst and further impairing locomotion. The results support the hypothesis that the state of the spinal cord is a “negotiated equilibrium” that serves all the behaviors that depend on it. When new learning changes the spinal cord, old behaviors undergo concurrent relearning that preserves or improves their key features. Thus, if an old behavior has been impaired by trauma or disease, spinal reflex conditioning, by changing a specific pathway and triggering a new negotiation, may enable recovery beyond that achieved simply by practicing the old behavior. Spinal reflex conditioning protocols might complement other neurorehabilitation methods and enhance recovery. PMID:24371288

  12. Frequency Mapping of Rat Spinal Cord at 7T

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Evan; Rauscher, Alexander; Kozlowski, Piotr; Yung, Andrew

    2012-10-01

    The spinal cord is an integral part of the nervous system responsible for sensory, motor, and reflex control crucial to all bodily function. Due to its non-invasive nature, MRI is well matched for characterizing and imaging of spinal cord, and is used extensively for clinical applications. Recent developments in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) at high field (7T) using phase represents a new approach of characterizing spinal cord myelin. Theory suggests that microstructure differences in myelinated white matter (WM) and non-myelinated gray matter (GM) affect MR phase, measurable frequency shifts. Data from pilot experiments using a multi-gradient echo (MGE) sequence to image rat spinal cords placed parallel to main magnetic field B0 has shown frequency shifts between not only between WM and GM, but also between specific WM tracts of the dorsal column, including the fasciculus gracilis, fasciculus cuneatus, and corticospinal tract. Using MGE, frequency maps at multiple echo times (TE) between 4ms and 22ms show a non-linear relationship between WM frequency, contrary to what was previously expected. These results demonstrate the effectiveness of MGE in revealing new information about spinal cord tissue microstructure, and lays important groundwork for in-vivo and human studies.

  13. Spinal cord regeneration in a tail autotomizing urodele.

    PubMed

    Dawley, Ellen M; O Samson, Shoji; Woodard, Kenton T; Matthias, Kathryn A

    2012-02-01

    Adult urodele amphibians possess extensive regenerative abilities, including lens, jaws, limbs, and tails. In this study, we examined the cellular events and time course of spinal cord regeneration in a species, Plethodon cinereus, that has the ability to autotomize its tail as an antipredator strategy. We propose that this species may have enhanced regenerative abilities as further coadaptations with this antipredator strategy. We examined the expression of nestin, vimentin, and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) after autotomy as markers of neural precursor cells and astroglia; we also traced the appearance of new neurons using 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine/neuronal nuclei (BrdU/NeuN) double labeling. As expected, the regenerating ependymal tube was a major source of new neurons; however, the spinal cord cranial to the plane of autotomy showed significant mitotic activity, more extensive than what is reported for other urodeles that cannot autotomize their tails. In addition, this species shows upregulation of nestin, vimentin, and GFAP within days after tail autotomy; further, this expression is upregulated within the spinal cord cranial to the plane of autotomy, not just within the extending ependymal tube, as reported in other urodeles. We suggest that enhanced survival of the spinal cord cranial to autotomy allows this portion to participate in the enhanced recovery and regeneration of the spinal cord. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Spinal Cord Injury Immediately Changes the State of the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Humanes-Valera, Desiré; Alonso-Calviño, Elena; Yague, Josué G.; Moxon, Karen A.; Oliviero, Antonio

    2010-01-01

    Spinal cord injury can produce extensive long-term reorganization of the cerebral cortex. Little is known, however, about the sequence of cortical events starting immediately after the lesion. Here we show that a complete thoracic transection of the spinal cord produces immediate functional reorganization in the primary somatosensory cortex of anesthetized rats. Besides the obvious loss of cortical responses to hindpaw stimuli (below the level of the lesion), cortical responses evoked by forepaw stimuli (above the level of the lesion) markedly increase. Importantly, these increased responses correlate with a slower and overall more silent cortical spontaneous activity, representing a switch to a network state of slow-wave activity similar to that observed during slow-wave sleep. The same immediate cortical changes are observed after reversible pharmacological block of spinal cord conduction, but not after sham. We conclude that the deafferentation due to spinal cord injury can immediately (within minutes) change the state of large cortical networks, and that this state change plays a critical role in the early cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury. PMID:20519527

  15. Iatrogenic Spinal Cord Injury Resulting From Cervical Spine Surgery.

    PubMed

    Daniels, Alan H; Hart, Robert A; Hilibrand, Alan S; Fish, David E; Wang, Jeffrey C; Lord, Elizabeth L; Buser, Zorica; Tortolani, P Justin; Stroh, D Alex; Nassr, Ahmad; Currier, Bradford L; Sebastian, Arjun S; Arnold, Paul M; Fehlings, Michael G; Mroz, Thomas E; Riew, K Daniel

    2017-04-01

    Retrospective cohort study of prospectively collected data. To examine the incidence of iatrogenic spinal cord injury following elective cervical spine surgery. A retrospective multicenter case series study involving 21 high-volume surgical centers from the AOSpine North America Clinical Research Network was conducted. Medical records for 17 625 patients who received cervical spine surgery (levels from C2 to C7) between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2011, were reviewed to identify occurrence of iatrogenic spinal cord injury. In total, 3 cases of iatrogenic spinal cord injury following cervical spine surgery were identified. Institutional incidence rates ranged from 0.0% to 0.24%. Of the 3 patients with quadriplegia, one underwent anterior-only surgery with 2-level cervical corpectomy, one underwent anterior surgery with corpectomy in addition to posterior surgery, and one underwent posterior decompression and fusion surgery alone. One patient had complete neurologic recovery, one partially recovered, and one did not recover motor function. Iatrogenic spinal cord injury following cervical spine surgery is a rare and devastating adverse event. No standard protocol exists that can guarantee prevention of this complication, and there is a lack of consensus regarding evaluation and treatment when it does occur. Emergent imaging with magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomography myelography to evaluate for compressive etiology or malpositioned instrumentation and avoidance of hypotension should be performed in cases of intraoperative and postoperative spinal cord injury.

  16. Neuroprotection and its molecular mechanism following spinal cord injury☆

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Nai-Kui; Xu, Xiao-Ming

    2012-01-01

    Acute spinal cord injury initiates a complex cascade of molecular events termed ‘secondary injury’, which leads to progressive degeneration ranging from early neuronal apoptosis at the lesion site to delayed degeneration of intact white matter tracts, and, ultimately, expansion of the initial injury. These secondary injury processes include, but are not limited to, inflammation, free radical-induced cell death, glutamate excitotoxicity, phospholipase A2 activation, and induction of extrinsic and intrinsic apoptotic pathways, which are important targets in developing neuroprotective strategies for treatment of spinal cord injury. Recently, a number of studies have shown promising results on neuroprotection and recovery of function in rodent models of spinal cord injury using treatments that target secondary injury processes including inflammation, phospholipase A2 activation, and manipulation of the PTEN-Akt/mTOR signaling pathway. The present review outlines our ongoing research on the molecular mechanisms of neuroprotection in experimental spinal cord injury and briefly summarizes our earlier findings on the therapeutic potential of pharmacological treatments in spinal cord injury. PMID:25624837

  17. Circumferential intradural meningioma of the thoracic spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Foster, Mitchell; Soh, Calvin; DuPlessis, Daniel; Karabatsou, Konstantina

    2016-07-01

    There are very few reported cases of a meningioma circumferentially surrounding the spinal cord. To date, this entity has only been described at the conus medullaris and in the cervical cord. Herewith, the authors describe a case of an intradural extramedullary meningioma that completely encircled the thoracic spinal cord. A 40-year-old woman with progressive numbness of the lower limbs and spasticity of gait following a fall presented to our hospital. Magnetic resonance imaging of the spine demonstrated an abnormality at T6-T7 completely encircling the spinal cord. The patient underwent a T6-T8 laminectomy and subtotal resection of the intradural partially calcified lesion. Resection of the anterolateral portion was not feasible. Histology revealed psammomatous meningioma (WHO Grade 1). The patient recovered well and was discharged with improved gait but some residual numbness of her feet and right hemithorax. This is the first reported case of an intradural extramedullary meningioma completely encircling the thoracic spinal cord. Achieving complete resection of this circumferential meningioma was not possible via a posterior approach. The optimum management of this condition is unknown; clearly, achieving symptomatic relief with adequate cord decompression is paramount; however, the long-term outcome and risk of recurrence in these cases, given their rarity and the difficulties in achieving complete resection, is unknown. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Nonlinear viscoelastic characterization of the porcine spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Shetye, Snehal S; Troyer, Kevin L; Streijger, Femke; Lee, Jae H T; Kwon, Brian K; Cripton, Peter A; Puttlitz, Christian M

    2014-02-01

    Although quasi-static and quasi-linear viscoelastic properties of the spinal cord have been reported previously, there are no published studies that have investigated the fully (strain-dependent) nonlinear viscoelastic properties of the spinal cord. In this study, stress relaxation experiments and dynamic cycling were performed on six fresh porcine lumbar cord specimens to examine their viscoelastic mechanical properties. The stress relaxation data were fitted to a modified superposition formulation and a novel finite ramp time correction technique was applied. The parameters obtained from this fitting methodology were used to predict the average dynamic cyclic viscoelastic behavior of the porcine cord. The data indicate that the porcine spinal cord exhibited fully nonlinear viscoelastic behavior. The average weighted root mean squared error for a Heaviside ramp fit was 2.8 kPa, which was significantly greater (p<0.001) than that of the nonlinear (comprehensive viscoelastic characterization method) fit (0.365 kPa). Further, the nonlinear mechanical parameters obtained were able to accurately predict the dynamic behavior, thus exemplifying the reliability of the obtained nonlinear parameters. These parameters will be important for future studies investigating various damage mechanisms of the spinal cord and studies developing high-resolution finite elements models of the spine. Copyright © 2013 Acta Materialia Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Nonlinear Viscoelastic Characterization of the Porcine Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Shetye, Snehal; Troyer, Kevin; Streijger, Femke; Lee, Jae H. T.; Kwon, Brian K.; Cripton, Peter; Puttlitz, Christian M.

    2014-01-01

    Although quasi-static and quasi-linear viscoelastic properties of the spinal cord have been reported previously, there are no published studies that have investigated the fully (strain-dependent) nonlinear viscoelastic properties of the spinal cord. In this study, stress relaxation experiments and dynamic cycling were performed on six fresh porcine lumbar cord specimens to examine their viscoelastic mechanical properties. The stress relaxation data were fitted to a modified superposition formulation and a novel finite ramp time correction technique was applied. The parameters obtained from this fitting methodology were used to predict the average dynamic cyclic viscoelastic behavior of the porcine cord. The data indicate that the porcine spinal cord exhibited fully nonlinear viscoelastic behavior. The average weighted RMSE for a Heaviside ramp fit was 2.8kPa, which was significantly greater (p < 0.001) than that of the nonlinear (comprehensive viscoelastic characterization (CVC) method) fit (0.365kPa). Further, the nonlinear mechanical parameters obtained were able to accurately predict the dynamic behavior, thus exemplifying the reliability of the obtained nonlinear parameters. These parameters will be important for future studies investigating various damage mechanisms of the spinal cord and studies developing high resolution finite elements models of the spine. PMID:24211612

  20. Electrophysiological and Anatomical Correlates of Spinal Cord Optical Coherence Tomography

    PubMed Central

    Valente, Maurizio; Krstajic, Nikola; Biella, Gabriele E. M.

    2016-01-01

    Despite the continuous improvement in medical imaging technology, visualizing the spinal cord poses severe problems due to structural or incidental causes, such as small access space and motion artifacts. In addition, positional guidance on the spinal cord is not commonly available during surgery, with the exception of neuronavigation techniques based on static pre-surgical data and of radiation-based methods, such as fluoroscopy. A fast, bedside, intraoperative real-time imaging, particularly necessary during the positioning of endoscopic probes or tools, is an unsolved issue. The objective of our work, performed on experimental rats, is to demonstrate potential intraoperative spinal cord imaging and probe guidance by optical coherence tomography (OCT). Concurrently, we aimed to demonstrate that the electromagnetic OCT irradiation exerted no particular effect at the neuronal and synaptic levels. OCT is a user-friendly, low-cost and endoscopy-compatible photonics-based imaging technique. In particular, by using a Fourier-domain OCT imager, operating at 850 nm wavelength and scanning transversally with respect to the spinal cord, we have been able to: 1) accurately image tissue structures in an animal model (muscle, spine bone, cerebro-spinal fluid, dura mater and spinal cord), and 2) identify the position of a recording microelectrode approaching and inserting into the cord tissue 3) check that the infrared radiation has no actual effect on the electrophysiological activity of spinal neurons. The technique, potentially extendable to full three-dimensional image reconstruction, shows prospective further application not only in endoscopic intraoperative analyses and for probe insertion guidance, but also in emergency and adverse situations (e.g. after trauma) for damage recognition, diagnosis and fast image-guided intervention. PMID:27050096

  1. Automated identification of spinal cord and vertebras on sagittal MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Chuan; Chan, Heang-Ping; Dong, Qian; He, Bo; Wei, Jun; Hadjiiski, Lubomir M.; Couriel, Daniel

    2014-03-01

    We are developing an automated method for the identification of the spinal cord and the vertebras on spinal MR images, which is an essential step for computerized analysis of bone marrow diseases. The spinal cord segment was first enhanced by a newly developed hierarchical multiscale tubular (HMT) filter that utilizes the complementary hyper- and hypo- intensities in the T1-weighted (T1W) and STIR MRI sequences. An Expectation-Maximization (EM) analysis method was then applied to the enhanced tubular structures to extract candidates of the spinal cord. The spinal cord was finally identified by a maximum-likelihood registration method by analysis of the features extracted from the candidate objects in the two MRI sequences. Using the identified spinal cord as a reference, the vertebras were localized based on the intervertebral disc locations extracted by another HMT filter applied to the T1W images. In this study, 5 and 30 MRI scans from 35 patients who were diagnosed with multiple myeloma disease were collected retrospectively with IRB approval as training and test set, respectively. The vertebras manually outlined by a radiologist were used as reference standard. A total of 422 vertebras were marked in the 30 test cases. For the 30 test cases, 100% (30/30) of the spinal cords were correctly segmented with 4 false positives (FPs) mistakenly identified on the back muscles in 4 scans. A sensitivity of 95.0% (401/422) was achieved for the identification of vertebras, and 5 FPs were marked in 4 scans with an average FP rate of 0.17 FPs/scan.

  2. Spinal stimulation of the upper lumbar spinal cord modulates urethral sphincter activity in rats after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Abud, Edsel M; Ichiyama, Ronaldo M; Havton, Leif A; Chang, Huiyi H

    2015-05-01

    After spinal cord injury (SCI), the neurogenic bladder is observed to develop asynchronous bladder and external urethral sphincter (EUS) contractions in a condition known as detrusor-sphincter dyssnergia (DSD). Activation of the EUS spinal controlling center located at the upper lumbar spinal cord may contribute to reduce EUS dyssynergic contractions and decrease urethral resistance during voiding. However, this mechanism has not been well studied. This study aimed at evaluating the effects of epidural stimulation (EpS) over the spinal EUS controlling center (L3) in combination with a serotonergic receptor agonist on EUS relaxation in naive rats and chronic (6-8 wk) T8 SCI rats. Cystometrogram and EUS electromyography (EMG) were obtained before and after the intravenous administration of 5HT-1A receptor agonist and antagonist. The latency, duration, frequency, amplitude, and area under curve of EpS-evoked EUS EMG responses were analyzed. EpS on L3 evoked an inhibition of EUS tonic contraction and an excitation of EUS intermittent bursting/relaxation correlating with urine expulsion in intact rats. Combined with a 5HT-1A receptor agonist, EpS on L3 evoked a similar effect in chronic T8 SCI rats to reduce urethral contraction (resistance). This study examined the effect of facilitating the EUS spinal controlling center to switch between urine storage and voiding phases by using EpS and a serotonergic receptor agonist. This novel approach of applying EpS on the EUS controlling center modulates EUS contraction and relaxation as well as reduces urethral resistance during voiding in chronic SCI rats with DSD.

  3. 76 FR 56504 - Proposed Information Collection (Spinal Cord Injury Patient Care Survey) Activity: Comment Request

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-13

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Spinal Cord Injury Patient Care Survey) Activity: Comment Request... spinal cord patients' satisfaction with VA rehabilitation and health care system. Affected Public... of automated collection techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title:...

  4. The spinal cord supports of vertebrae in the crown-group salamanders (Caudata, Urodela).

    PubMed

    Skutschas, Pavel P; Baleeva, Nataly V

    2012-09-01

    The development of spinal cord supports (bony thickenings which extend into the vertebral canal of vertebrae) in primitive (Salamandrella keyserlingii) and derived (Lissotriton vulgaris) salamanders were described. The spinal cord supports develop as the protuberances of periostal bone of the neural arches in the anteroproximal part of the septal collagenous fibers which connect a transverse myoseptum with the notochord and spinal cord, in the septal bundle inside the vertebral canal. Spinal cord supports were also found in some teleostean (Salmo salar, Oncorhynchus mykiss) and dipnoan (Protopterus sp.) fishes. The absence of the spinal cord supports in vertebrates with cartilaginous vertebrae (lampreys, chondrichthyan, and chondrostean fishes) corresponds to the fact that the spinal cord supports are bone structures. The absence of the spinal cord supports in frogs correlates with the lack of the well developed septal bundles inside the vertebral canal. The spinal cord supports are, presumably, a synapomorphic character for salamanders which originated independently of those observed in teleostean and dipnoan fishes.

  5. Biomechanical Behaviors in Three Types of Spinal Cord Injury Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Khuyagbaatar, Batbayar; Kim, Kyungsoo; Man Park, Won; Hyuk Kim, Yoon

    2016-08-01

    Clinically, spinal cord injuries (SCIs) are radiographically evaluated and diagnosed from plain radiographs, computed tomography (CT), and magnetic resonance imaging. However, it is difficult to conclude that radiographic evaluation of SCI can directly explain the fundamental mechanism of spinal cord damage. The von-Mises stress and maximum principal strain are directly associated with neurological damage in the spinal cord from a biomechanical viewpoint. In this study, the von-Mises stress and maximum principal strain in the spinal cord as well as the cord cross-sectional area (CSA) were analyzed under various magnitudes for contusion, dislocation, and distraction SCI mechanisms, using a finite-element (FE) model of the cervical spine with spinal cord including white matter, gray matter, dura mater with nerve roots, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). A regression analysis was performed to find correlation between peak von-Mises stress/peak maximum principal strain at the cross section of the highest reduction in CSA and corresponding reduction in CSA of the cord. Dislocation and contusion showed greater peak stress and strain values in the cord than distraction. The substantial increases in von-Mises stress as well as CSA reduction similar to or more than 30% were produced at a 60% contusion and a 60% dislocation, while the maximum principal strain was gradually increased as injury severity elevated. In addition, the CSA reduction had a strong correlation with peak von-Mises stress/peak maximum principal strain for the three injury mechanisms, which might be fundamental information in elucidating the relationship between radiographic and mechanical parameters related to SCI.

  6. Military gunshot wound-induced spinal cord injuries.

    PubMed

    Alaca, Ridvan; Yilmaz, Bilge; Goktepe, Ahmet Salim; Yazicioglu, Kamil; Gunduz, Sukru

    2002-11-01

    Gunshot wounds are the second leading cause of spinal cord injuries in developed countries, whereas in undeveloped and developing countries, this likelihood is much more. However, the weapon and injury characteristics are very different between those two groups of countries. The aim of this study was to review our experience with gunshot wound-caused spinal cord injury during our struggle with terrorism, to examine surgical and medical complications, and to determine the difference between civilian and military gunshot wounds. One hundred five male patients (mean, 25 years of age) were examined according to completeness, spinal and nonspinal injuries, American Spinal Injury Association classification, motor and pinprick scores, surgical and nonsurgical interventions, surgical complications, and spinal cord injury-related medical complications. This study has shown that the likelihood of completeness was higher in gunshot wounds with high velocity weapons. Because of their higher wounding capacity, the difference between vertebral and neurological levels was not very different as it was on the other etiologies. Fortunately, spinal cord injury-related medical complications were less than expected.

  7. Dynamics and plasticity of spinal locomotor circuits.

    PubMed

    El Manira, Abdeljabbar

    2014-12-01

    Spinal circuits generate coordinated locomotor movements. These hardwired circuits are supplemented with neuromodulation that provide the necessary flexibility for animals to move smoothly through their environment. This review will highlight some recent insights gained in understanding the functional dynamics and plasticity of the locomotor circuits. First the mechanisms governing the modulation of the speed of locomotion will be discussed. Second, advantages of the modular organization of the locomotor networks with multiple circuits engaged in a task-dependent manner will be examined. Finally, the neuromodulation and the resulting plasticity of the locomotor circuits will be summarized with an emphasis on endocannabinoids and nitric oxide. The intention is to extract general principles of organization and discuss some onto-genetic and phylogenetic divergences.

  8. Optogenetic Interrogation of Functional Synapse Formation by Corticospinal Tract Axons in the Injured Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Jayaprakash, Naveen; Wang, Zimei; Hoeynck, Brian; Krueger, Nicholas; Kramer, Audra; Balle, Eric; Wheeler, Daniel S.; Wheeler, Robert A.

    2016-01-01

    distinguishing its function from indirect relay circuits and target field plasticity have presented technical challenges. Here we force the overexpression of Sox11 to stimulate the growth of corticospinal tract axons in the cervical spinal cord and then use specific optogenetic activation to assess their ability to directly drive postsynaptic activity in spinal cord neurons. By confirming successful synaptic integration, these data illustrate a novel optogenetic-based strategy to monitor and optimize functional reconnection by newly sprouted axons in the injured CNS. PMID:27225775

  9. Optogenetic Interrogation of Functional Synapse Formation by Corticospinal Tract Axons in the Injured Spinal Cord.

    PubMed

    Jayaprakash, Naveen; Wang, Zimei; Hoeynck, Brian; Krueger, Nicholas; Kramer, Audra; Balle, Eric; Wheeler, Daniel S; Wheeler, Robert A; Blackmore, Murray G

    2016-05-25

    from indirect relay circuits and target field plasticity have presented technical challenges. Here we force the overexpression of Sox11 to stimulate the growth of corticospinal tract axons in the cervical spinal cord and then use specific optogenetic activation to assess their ability to directly drive postsynaptic activity in spinal cord neurons. By confirming successful synaptic integration, these data illustrate a novel optogenetic-based strategy to monitor and optimize functional reconnection by newly sprouted axons in the injured CNS. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/365877-14$15.00/0.

  10. Sexual function in spinal cord lesioned men.

    PubMed

    Biering-Sørensen, F; Sønksen, J

    2001-09-01

    Review of literature. To review the physical aspects related to penile erection, ejaculatory dysfunction, semen characteristics, and techniques for enhancement of fertility in spinal cord lesioned (SCL) men. Worldwide: individuals with traumatic as well as non-traumatic SCL. Recommendations for management of erectile dysfunction in SCL men: If it is possible to obtain a satisfactory erection but of insufficient duration, then try to use a venous constrictor band to find out if this is sufficient to maintain the erection. Otherwise we recommend Sildenafil. If Sildenafil is not satisfactory then use intracavernous injection with prostaglandin E(1) (some SCL men may prefer cutaneous or intraurethral application). We discourage the implantation of penile prosthesis for the sole purpose of erection. Recommendations for management of ejaculatory dysfunction in SCL men: Penile vibratory stimulation (PVS) to induce ejaculation is recommended as first treatment choice. If PVS fails, SCL men should be referred for electroejaculation (EEJ). Semen characteristics: Impaired semen profiles with low motility rates are seen in the majority of SCL men. Recently reported data gives evidence of a decline in spermatogenesis and motility of ejaculated spermatozoa shortly after (few weeks) an acute SCL. It is suggested that some factors in the seminal plasma and/or disordered storage of spermatozoa in the seminal vesicles are mainly responsible for the impaired semen profiles in men with chronic SCL. Fertility: Home insemination with semen obtained by PVS and introduced intravaginally in order to achieve successful pregnancies may be an option for some SCL men and their partners. The majority of SCL men will further enhance their fertility potential when using either PVS or EEJ combined with assisted reproduction techniques such as intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization with or without intracytoplasmic sperm injection.

  11. [Electrophysiological testing in spinal cord tumors].

    PubMed

    André-Obadia, N; Mauguière, F

    2017-02-01

    Evoked potentials (EPs) are useful to evaluate the functional impairment of motor and somatosensory pathways in spinal cord tumors. Conduction through pyramidal tracts is evaluated by motor EPs (MEPs) elicited by transcranial stimulation, magnetic for awake patients or electric in the operating room. Somatosensory EPs (SEPs) and laser EPs (LEPs) are complementary procedures to explore conduction in dorsal columns and spinothalamic tracts, respectively. MEPs as well as SEPs show conduction abnormalities in about 60% of cases with a sensitivity that increases up to 70% when both procedures are carried out. Abnormalities are observed in the absence of any clinical sign in respectively 7% and 15% of cases for MEPs and SEPs. Multilevel stimulations for SEPs recordings permit to detect segmental dysfunction in 70% in case of cervical TIM, even in the absence of clinical signs. LEPs are useful in specific clinical situations: they allow a dermatomal stimulation and are correlated to segmental thermoalgic anaesthesia. Electrophysiological testing plays an important role in the diagnostic and therapeutic strategy: before surgery, MEPs and SEPs objectively evaluate the functional impairment directly related to the lesion. They also help by permitting a follow-up, either before surgery when the surgical decision is delayed because of a good clinical tolerance of the lesion, or after operation to evaluate the functional evolution. Intraoperative monitoring of MEPs and SEPs allows informing the surgeon about the impact on each surgical manipulation. No prospective randomized study has been performed to date to compare clinical evolution after surgery with or without monitoring. Nevertheless, a wide consensus became established in favor of monitoring to limit the risk of postoperative definite deficit and to permit an optimal surgical resection without risk when responses are preserved.

  12. Spinal cord projections to the cerebellum in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Sengul, Gulgun; Fu, YuHong; Yu, You; Paxinos, George

    2015-09-01

    The projections from the spinal cord to the cerebellar cortex were studied using retrograde neuronal tracers. Thus far, no study has shown the detailed topographic mapping of the projections from the spinal neuron clusters to the cerebellar cortex regions for experimental animals, and there are no studies for the mouse. Tracers Fluoro-Gold and cholera toxin B were injected into circumscribed regions of the cerebellar cortex, and retrogradely labeled spinal cord neurons were mapped throughout the spinal cord. Spinal projections to the cerebellar cortex were mainly from five neuronal columns--central cervical nucleus, dorsal nucleus, lumbar and sacral precerebellar nuclei, and lumbar border precerebellar cells--and from scattered neurons located in the deep dorsal horn and laminae 6-8. The spinocerebellar projections to the cortex were mainly to the vermis. All five precerebellar cell columns projected to both anterior and posterior parts of the cerebellar cortex. Results of this study provide an amendment to the known rostral and caudal boundaries of the precerebellar cell columns in the mouse. Scattered precerebellar neurons in the most caudal deep dorsal horn and laminae 6-8 projected exclusively to the anterior part of the cerebellar cortex. In this study, no labeled spinal neurons were found to project to the lobules 6 and 7 of the cerebellar vermis, the flocculus, and the paraflocculus. Spinocerebellar neurons were located bilaterally, but the majority of the projections were contralateral for the central cervical nucleus, and ipsilateral for the remaining spinal precerebellar neuronal clusters.

  13. Spinal plasticity in robot-mediated therapy for the lower limbs.

    PubMed

    Stevenson, Andrew Jt; Mrachacz-Kersting, Natalie; van Asseldonk, Edwin; Turner, Duncan L; Spaich, Erika G

    2015-09-17

    Robot-mediated therapy can help improve walking ability in patients following injuries to the central nervous system. However, the efficacy of this treatment varies between patients, and evidence for the mechanisms underlying functional improvements in humans is poor, particularly in terms of neural changes in the spinal cord. Here, we review the recent literature on spinal plasticity induced by robotic-based training in humans and propose recommendations for the measurement of spinal plasticity using robotic devices. Evidence for spinal plasticity in humans following robotic training is limited to the lower limbs. Body weight-supported (BWS) robotic-assisted step training of patients with spinal cord injury (SCI) or stroke patients has been shown to lead to changes in the amplitude and phase modulation of spinal reflex pathways elicited by electrical stimulation or joint rotations. Of particular importance is the finding that, among other changes to the spinal reflex circuitries, BWS robotic-assisted step training in SCI patients resulted in the re-emergence of a physiological phase modulation of the soleus H-reflex during walking. Stretch reflexes elicited by joint rotations constitute a tool of interest to probe spinal circuitry since the technology necessary to produce these perturbations could be integrated as a natural part of robotic devices. Presently, ad-hoc devices with an actuator capable of producing perturbations powerful enough to elicit the reflex are available but are not part of robotic devices used for training purposes. A further development of robotic devices that include the technology to elicit stretch reflexes would allow for the spinal circuitry to be routinely tested as a part of the training and evaluation protocols.

  14. Somatotopic arrangement of thermal sensory regions in the healthy human spinal cord determined by means of spinal cord functional MRI.

    PubMed

    Stroman, Patrick W; Bosma, Rachael L; Tsyben, Anastasia

    2012-09-01

    Previous functional MRI studies of normal sensory function in the human spinal cord, including right-to-left symmetry of activity, have been influenced by order effects between repeated studies. In this study, we apply thermal sensory stimulation to four dermatomes within each functional MRI time-series acquisition. Each of the four dermatomes receives a unique stimulation paradigm, such that the four paradigms form a linearly independent set, enabling detection of each individual stimulus response. Functional MRI data are shown spanning the cervical spinal cord and brainstem in 10 healthy volunteers. Results of general linear model analysis demonstrate consistent patterns of activity within the spinal cord segments corresponding to each dermatome, and a high degree of symmetry between right-side and left-side stimulation. Connectivity analyses also demonstrate consistent areas of activity and connectivity between spinal cord and brainstem regions corresponding to known anatomy. However, right-side and left-side responses are not at precisely the same rostral-caudal positions, but are offset by several millimeters, with left-side responses consistently more caudal than right-side responses. The results confirm that distinct responses to multiple interleaved sensory stimuli can be distinguished, enabling studies of sensory responses within the spinal cord without the confounding effects of comparing sequential studies.

  15. An investigation of motion correction algorithms for pediatric spinal cord DTI in healthy subjects and patients with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Middleton, Devon M; Mohamed, Feroze B; Barakat, Nadia; Hunter, Louis N; Shellikeri, Sphoorti; Finsterbusch, Jürgen; Faro, Scott H; Shah, Pallav; Samdani, Amer F; Mulcahey, M J

    2014-06-01

    Patient and physiological motion can cause artifacts in DTI of the spinal cord which can impact image quality and diffusion indices. The purpose of this investigation was to determine a reliable motion correction method for pediatric spinal cord DTI and show effects of motion correction on DTI parameters in healthy subjects and patients with spinal cord injury. Ten healthy subjects and ten subjects with spinal cord injury were scanned using a 3T scanner. Images were acquired with an inner field-of-view DTI sequence covering cervical spine levels C1 to C7. Images were corrected for motion using two types of transformation (rigid and affine) and three cost functions. Corrected images and transformations were examined qualitatively and quantitatively using in-house developed code. Fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) indices were calculated and tested for statistical significance pre- and post- motion correction. Images corrected using rigid methods showed improvements in image quality, while affine methods frequently showed residual distortions in corrected images. Blinded evaluation of pre and post correction images showed significant improvement in cord homogeneity and edge conspicuity in corrected images (p<0.0001). The average FA changes were statistically significant (p<0.0001) in the spinal cord injury group, while healthy subjects showed less FA change and were not significant. In both healthy subjects and subjects with spinal cord injury, quantitative and qualitative analysis showed the rigid scaled-least-squares registration technique to be the most reliable and effective in improving image quality. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Current and emerging treatment options for spinal cord ischemia.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Pikija, Slaven; Mutzenbach, J Sebastian; Seidl, Martin; Leis, Stefan; Trinka, Eugen; Sellner, Johann

    2016-10-01

    Spinal cord infarction (SCI) is a rare but disabling disorder caused by a wide spectrum of conditions. Given the lack of randomized-controlled trials, contemporary treatment concepts are adapted from guidelines for cerebral ischemia, atherosclerotic vascular disease, and acute traumatic spinal cord injury. In addition, patients with SCI are at risk for several potentially life-threatening but preventable systemic and neurologic complications. Notably, there is emerging evidence from preclinical studies for the use of neuroprotection in acute ischemic injury of the spinal cord. In this review, we discuss the current state of the art for the therapy and prevention of SCI and highlight potential emerging treatment concepts awaiting translational adoption. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Exercise Training Promotes Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Juanjuan; Deng, Lingxiao; Li, Jianan

    2016-01-01

    The exercise training is an effective therapy for spinal cord injury which has been applied to clinic. Traditionally, the exercise training has been considered to improve spinal cord function only through enhancement, compensation, and replacement of the remaining function of nerve and muscle. Recently, accumulating evidences indicated that exercise training can improve the function in different levels from end-effector organ such as skeletal muscle to cerebral cortex through reshaping skeletal muscle structure and muscle fiber type, regulating physiological and metabolic function of motor neurons in the spinal cord and remodeling function of the cerebral cortex. We compiled published data collected in different animal models and clinical studies into a succinct review of the current state of knowledge. PMID:28050288

  18. The spinal cord research foundation: two decades of progress.

    PubMed

    Kelley, M S

    2001-04-01

    Over the course of the past 24 years, the Paralyzed Veterans of America's Spinal Cord Research Foundation (SCRF) has provided support for more than 400 research grants in a wide range of areas, from improved wheelchair design to axon pathfinding in Drosophila. The Founders of SCRF, as well as its current trustees, believe that it is imperative to target a broad range of research areas to maximize the quality of life for people, both veterans and nonveterans, with paralysis. This approach has involved the support of basic science and clinical research directed towards repair of the spinal cord, as well as research into improved treatments for complications of spinal cord dysfunction and other projects, including engineering grants and conferences, that may enhance the quality of life for people with paralysis within the immediate future.

  19. Spatiotemporal patterns of Gem expression after rat spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Wen, Hai; Cao, Jianhua; Yu, Xiaowei; Sun, Binbin; Ding, Tao; Li, Ming; Li, Debao; Wu, Hao; Long, Long; Xu, Guangfei; Zhang, Feng

    2013-06-21

    Gem is an atypical protein of the Ras superfamily that plays a role in regulating voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels and cytoskeletal reorganization. To elucidate the certain expression and biological function in central nervous system (CNS), we performed an acute spinal cord contusion injury model in adult rats. Western blot analysis showed a marked up-regulation of Gem after spinal cord injury (SCI). Immunohistochemistry revealed wide distribution of Gem in spinal cord, including neurons and glial cells. Double immunofluorescent staining for proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and phenotype-specific markers indicated increases of Gem expression in proliferating microglia and astrocytes. Our data suggest that Gem may be implicated in the proliferation of microglia and astrocytes after SCI. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Malnutrition in Spinal Cord Injury: More Than Nutritional Deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Dionyssiotis, Yannis

    2012-01-01

    Denervation of the spinal cord below the level of injury leads to complications producing malnutrition. Nutritional status affects mortality and pathology of injured subjects and it has been reported that two thirds of individuals enrolled in rehabilitation units are malnourished. Therefore, the aim should be either to maintain an optimal nutritional status, or supplement these subjects in order to overcome deficiencies in nutrients or prevent obesity. This paper reviews methods of nutritional assessment and describes the physiopathological mechanisms of malnutrition based on the assumption that spinal cord injured subjects need to receive adequate nutrition to promote optimal recovery, placing nutrition as a first line treatment and not an afterthought in the rehabilitation of spinal cord injury. PMID:22870169

  1. Spinal cord stimulation for refractory angina in a patient implanted with a cardioverter defibrillator.

    PubMed

    Ferrero, Paolo; Grimaldi, Roberto; Massa, Riccardo; Chiribiri, Amedeo; De Luca, Anna; Castellano, Maddalena; Cardano, Paola; Trevi, Gian Paolo

    2007-01-01

    Spinal cord stimulation is currently used to treat refractory angina. Some concerns may arise about the possible interaction concerning the spinal cord stimulator in patients already implanted with a pacemaker or a cardioverter defibrillator. We are going to describe the successful implantation of a spinal cord stimulator in a patient previously implanted with a cardioverter defibrillator.

  2. 76 FR 71623 - Agency Information Collection (Spinal Cord Injury Patient Care Survey) Under OMB Review

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-18

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Spinal Cord Injury Patient Care Survey) Under OMB Review AGENCY.... 2900-New (VA Form 10-0515).'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Spinal Cord Injury Patient Care Survey... Collection. Abstract: Information collected on VA Form 10-0515 will be used to determine spinal cord...

  3. Delayed paraplegia after spinal cord ischemic injury requires caspase-3 activation in mice.

    PubMed

    Kakinohana, Manabu; Kida, Kotaro; Minamishima, Shizuka; Atochin, Dmitriy N; Huang, Paul L; Kaneki, Masao; Ichinose, Fumito

    2011-08-01

    Delayed paraplegia remains a devastating complication after ischemic spinal cord injury associated with aortic surgery and trauma. Although apoptosis has been implicated in the pathogenesis of delayed neurodegeneration, mechanisms responsible for the delayed paraplegia remain incompletely understood. The aim of this study was to elucidate the role of apoptosis in delayed motor neuron degeneration after spinal cord ischemia. Mice were subjected to spinal cord ischemia induced by occlusion of the aortic arch and left subclavian artery for 5 or 9 minutes. Motor function in the hind limb was evaluated up to 72 hours after spinal cord ischemia. Histological studies were performed to detect caspase-3 activation, glial activation, and motor neuron survival in the serial spinal cord sections. To investigate the impact of caspase-3 activation on spinal cord ischemia, outcome of the spinal cord ischemia was examined in mice deficient for caspase-3. In wild-type mice, 9 minutes of spinal cord ischemia caused immediate paraplegia, whereas 5 minutes of ischemia caused delayed paraplegia. Delayed paraplegia after 5 minutes of spinal cord ischemia was associated with histological evidence of caspase-3 activation, reactive astrogliosis, microglial activation, and motor neuron loss starting at approximately 24 to 48 hours after spinal cord ischemia. Caspase-3 deficiency prevented delayed paraplegia and motor neuron loss after 5 minutes of spinal cord ischemia, but not immediate paraplegia after 9 minutes of ischemia. The present results suggest that caspase-3 activation is required for delayed paraplegia and motor neuron degeneration after spinal cord ischemia.

  4. Developing a Meaningful Life: Social Reintegration of Service-Members and Veterans with Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    Reintegration of Service-Members and Veterans with Spinal Cord Injury PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Seth D. Messinger...SUBTITLE Developing a Meaningful Life: Social Reintegration of Service- Social Reintegration of Service Me Members and Veterans with Spinal Cord...communities and cultural identities that is key to long-term success . 15. SUBJECT TERMS Spinal Cord Injury, Community Reintegration , Qualitative

  5. Overcoming the Practical Barriers to Spinal Cord Cell Transplantation for ALS

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    Spinal Cord Cell Transplantation for ALS PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Nicholas Boulis CONTRACTING ORGANIZATION: Emory University...COVERED 30September2012–29September2013 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Overcoming the Practical Barriers to Spinal Cord Cell Transplantation 5a. CONTRACT...injections. At the same time, little is understood about the appropriate immunosuppressive therapy for spinal cord stem cell transplant recipients. In our

  6. Vascular malformations of the spinal cord (angiodysgenetic myelomalacia): a critique on its pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Badejo, L; Sangalang, V E

    1979-02-01

    Two cases of angiodysgenetic myelomalacia are presented. Both patients had progressive weakness and sensory deficits in the lower extremities and vascular malformations of their spinal cords. The lesions were located on the dorsum of the spinal cord and the dorso-spinal roots. We believe the symptoms that developed later in life were due to spinal cord ischemia resulting from late degenerative changes in the vessels of the malformation and an ever increasing spinal "steal".

  7. Potential associations between chronic whiplash and incomplete spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Smith, AC; Parrish, TB; Hoggarth, MA; McPherson, JG; Tysseling, VM; Wasielewski, M; Kim, HE; Hornby, TG; Elliott, JM

    2015-01-01

    Study Design: This research utilized a cross-sectional design with control group inclusion. Objectives: Preliminary evidence suggests that a portion of the patient population with chronic whiplash may have sustained spinal cord damage. Our hypothesis is that in some cases of chronic whiplash-associated disorders (WAD), observed muscle weakness in the legs will be associated with local signs of a partial spinal cord injury of the cervical spine. Setting: University based laboratory in Chicago, IL, USA. Methods: Five participants with chronic WAD were compared with five gender/age/height/weight/body mass index (BMI) control participants. For a secondary investigation, the chronic WAD group was compared with five unmatched participants with motor incomplete spinal cord injury (iSCI). Spinal cord motor tract integrity was assessed using magnetization transfer imaging. Muscle fat infiltration (MFI) was quantified using fat/water separation magnetic resonance imaging. Central volitional muscle activation of the plantarflexors was assessed using a burst superimposition technique. Results: We found reduced spinal cord motor tract integrity, increased MFI of the neck and lower extremity muscles and significantly impaired voluntary plantarflexor muscle activation in five participants with chronic WAD. The lower extremity structural changes and volitional weakness in chronic WAD were comparable to participants with iSCI. Conclusion: The results support the position that a subset of the chronic whiplash population may have sustained partial damage to the spinal cord. Sponsorship: NIH R01HD079076-01A1, NIH T32 HD057845 and the Foundation for Physical Therapy Promotion of Doctoral Studies program. PMID:27630770

  8. Spinal cord lesions and disability in Hispanics with multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Amezcua, L; Lerner, A; Ledezma, K; Conti, D; Law, M; Weiner, L; Langer-Gould, A

    2013-11-01

    Longitudinally extensive spinal cord lesions (LESCLs) are believed to occur predominantly with opticospinal multiple sclerosis (OSMS) and are associated with disability. The purpose of this study is to describe the prevalence and patterns of spinal cord lesions in Hispanics with multiple sclerosis (MS) and OSMS and their association with disability. A cross-sectional study of 164 patients with complete MRIs was used. In each case the spinal cord was classified: LESCLs, scattered spinal cord lesions (sSCLs) or no spinal cord lesions (noSCLs). Clinical course was defined as classical MS or OSMS. Risk of disability (Expanded Disability Status Scale ≥4.0) was adjusted for age, disease duration and sex using logistic regression. A total of 125/164 (73 %) MS patients had spinal cord lesions (sSCLs, 57 %; LESCLs, 19 %), but only 11 (7 %) had OSMS. LESCLs were associated with disability (p < 0.0001), longer disease duration (p < 0.0001) and MS (n = 21 vs. n = 10 OSMS; p < 0.0001). LESCLs were also associated with the greatest risk to disability (OR 7.3, 95 % CIs 1.9-26.5; p = 0.003; sSCLs OR 2.5, 95 % CIs 0.9-7.1; p = 0.09) compared with noSCLs. LESCLs are more common than OSMS and are associated with worse disability even in patients with MS. These results suggest that LESCLs are a more important marker of disability in MS than OSMS and may be an early indicator of more aggressive disease in this population.

  9. Scratching activates microglia in the mouse spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ying; Dun, Siok L.; Chen, Yi-Hung; Luo, Jin J.; Cowan, Alan; Dun, Nae J.

    2014-01-01

    The present study tested the hypothesis that repetitive scratching provoked by either of two known pruritogens, compound 48/80 and 5′-guanidinonaltrindole (GNTI), is accompanied by activation of microglia cells in the mouse spinal cord. Immunohistochemical studies revealed that CD11b, a cell surface marker of microglia cells, was up-regulated in the spinal cord 10–30 min post subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of compound 48/80 (50 μg/100 μl) or GNTI (0.3 mg/kg) to the back of the mouse neck. Numerous intensely labeled CD11b immunoreactive (irCD11b) cells, with the appearance of hypertrophic reactive microglia, were distributed throughout the gray and white matter. In contrast, weakly labeled irCD11b cells were distributed in the spinal cord from mice injected with saline. Western blots showed that CD11b expression levels were significantly increased in spinal cords of mice injected s.c. with either pruritogen, reached a peak response in about 30 min, and declined toward the basal level in the ensuing 60 min. In addition, phospho-p38 (p-p38), but not p38, levels were up-regulated in spinal cords from mice injected with compound 48/80 or GNTI, with a time course parallel to that of CD11b expression. Pretreatment of the mice with nalfurafine (20 μg/kg; s.c.), a κ opioid receptor agonist that has been shown to suppress scratching, reduced CD11b and p-p38 expression induced by either pruritogen. The result demonstrates, for the first time, that scratch behavior induced by pruritogens GNTI and compound 48/80 is accompanied by a parallel activation of microglia cells in the spinal cord. PMID:25354468

  10. [Operative ultrasonography of the brain and spinal cord pathology].

    PubMed

    Machi, J; Sigel, B; Menoni, R; Jafar, J J; Beitler, J C; Crowell, R M

    1984-07-01

    B-mode real-time ultrasound using 5 or 7.5 MHz transducer has been employed during 21 operations for brain pathology and spinal cord lesions. Ultrasonic scanning was performed at the following operations: 10 brain tumors (4 glioblastomas multiforme, 2 astrocytomas, 1 medulloblastoma, 2 metastatic tumors), 2 brain cysts (arachnoid, epidermoid), 1 tuberculous abscess, 3 cerebral hematomas: 2 spinal cord tumors (malignant melanoma, glioma), 2 syringomyelias, 1 posterior longitudinal ligament thickening. Operative ultrasound was useful prior to dural incisions and particularly for subcortical lesions. In addition, ultrasound provided assistance at spinal cord surgery. Our experience has been reviewed and summarized in this report in terms of specific usefulness of assistance of this method which has proven helpful to the neurosurgeons. The types of assistance provided by operative ultrasonography include: Location of dural incision. Localization of brain and spinal cord lesions prior to biopsy. Diagnosis which has not been made preoperatively (e.g. necrosis or cystic area in tumor). Consistency of each lesion (e.g. solid or cystic, necrosis, loculation). Size, extent and depth of brain tumor, cyst, abscess and hematoma. Presence and extent of spinal cord syrinx. Relation of tumor to spinal cord and dura. Access route for biopsy and drainage (avoiding critical areas such as motor strip). Exclusion of bleeding or hematoma following biopsy. Confirmation of the effectiveness of drainage or resection of lesions. Relationship between pathology and surrounding anatomic structures. A number of important assistance by the utilization of ultrasound during neurological surgery have been identified.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  11. Scratching activates microglia in the mouse spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Dun, Siok L; Chen, Yi-Hung; Luo, Jin J; Cowan, Alan; Dun, Nae J

    2015-03-01

    This study tested the hypothesis that repetitive scratching provoked by two known pruritogens, compound 48/80 and 5'-guanidinonaltrindole (GNTI), is accompanied by activation of microglial cells in the mouse spinal cord. Immunohistochemical studies revealed that the complement receptor 3, also known as cluster determinant 11b (CD11b), a cell surface marker of microglial cells, was upregulated in the spinal cord 10-30 min after a subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of compound 48/80 (50 μg/100 μl) or GNTI (0.3 mg/kg) to the back of the mouse neck. Numerous intensely labeled CD11b-immunoreactive (CD11b-ir) cells, with the appearance of hypertrophic reactive microglia, were distributed throughout the gray and white matter. In contrast, weakly labeled CD11b-ir cells were distributed in the spinal cord from mice injected with saline. Western blots showed that CD11b expression levels were significantly increased in spinal cords of mice injected s.c. with either pruritogen, reached a peak response in about 30 min, and declined to about the basal level in the ensuing 60 min. In addition, phospho-p38 (p-p38) but not p38 levels were upregulated in spinal cords from mice injected with compound 48/80 or GNTI, with a time course parallel to that of CD11b expression. Pretreatment of the mice with nalfurafine (20 µg/kg; s.c.), a κ-opioid receptor agonist that has been shown to suppress scratching, reduced CD11b and p-p38 expression induced by either pruritogen. The results demonstrate, for the first time, that scratch behavior induced by the pruritogens GNTI and compound 48/80 is accompanied by a parallel activation of microglial cells in the spinal cord.

  12. Nogo-A expression dynamically varies after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jian-wei; Yang, Jun-feng; Ma, Yong; Hua, Zhen; Guo, Yang; Gu, Xiao-lin; Zhang, Ya-feng

    2015-01-01

    The mechanism involved in neural regeneration after spinal cord injury is unclear. The myelin-derived protein Nogo-A, which is specific to the central nervous system, has been identified to negatively affect the cytoskeleton and growth program of axotomized neurons. Studies have shown that Nogo-A exerts immediate and chronic inhibitory effects on neurite outgrowth. In vivo, inhibitors of Nogo-A have been shown to lead to a marked enhancement of regenerative axon extension. We established a spinal cord injury model in rats using a free-falling weight drop device to subsequently investigate Nogo-A expression. Nogo-A mRNA and protein expression and immunoreactivity were detected in spinal cord tissue using real-time quantitative PCR, immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis. At 24 hours after spinal cord injury, Nogo-A protein and mRNA expression was low in the injured group compared with control and sham-operated groups. The levels then continued to drop further and were at their lowest at 3 days, rapidly rose to a peak after 7 days, and then gradually declined again after 14 days. These changes were observed at both the mRNA and protein level. The transient decrease observed early after injury followed by high levels for a few days indicates Nogo-A expression is time dependent. This may contribute to the lack of regeneration in the central nervous system after spinal cord injury. The dynamic variation of Nogo-A should be taken into account in the treatment of spinal cord injury. PMID:25883620

  13. Multiple extradural spinal arachnoid cysts causing diffuse myelomalacia of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Ergun, Tarkan; Lakadamyali, Hatice

    2009-11-01

    Extradural spinal cyst is a rare cause of compression myelopathy. It is usually solitary and its typical location is posterior to the spinal cord. We present a case of multiple spinal arachnoid cysts causing diffuse myelomalacia secondary to a significant compression of the spinal cord with no symptom relief after surgical decompression. A 35-year-old female patient presented to our hospital complaining of progressive weakness and numbness of both lower extremities for the last 2 months, being more prominent on the right side. Her history was significant for back pain that started after a vaginal delivery 1 year ago. Spinal MRI revealed multiple extradural arachnoid cysts and diffuse myelomalacia. A T4-T6 level laminectomy was performed. The cyst was nearly totally resected. There was partial symptomatic relief after surgery, but 5 months later her symptoms worsened. MRI revealed nodular syringomyelia and atrophy of the thoracic spinal cord. Extradural spinal arachnoid cyst is to be considered in the differential diagnosis of spinal cord compression. Vaginal delivery may accelerate the process and symptoms by a sudden increase in the cyst size. In cases of myelomalacia secondary to cyst pressure postoperative results are quite poor.

  14. Spinal cord ischemia following thoracotomy without epidural anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Raz, Aeyal; Avramovich, Aharon; Saraf-Lavi, Efrat; Saute, Milton; Eidelman, Leonid A

    2006-06-01

    Paraplegia is an uncommon yet devastating complication following thoracotomy, usually caused by compression or ischemia of the spinal cord. Ischemia without compression may be a result of global ischemia, vascular injury and other causes. Epidural anesthesia has been implicated as a major cause. This report highlights the fact that perioperative cord ischemia and paraplegia may be unrelated to epidural intervention. A 71-yr-old woman was admitted for a left upper lobectomy for resection of a non-small cell carcinoma of the lung. The patient refused epidural catheter placement and underwent a left T5-6 thoracotomy under general anesthesia. During surgery, she was hemodynamically stable and good oxygen saturation was maintained. Several hours following surgery the patient complained of loss of sensation in her legs. Neurological examination disclosed a complete motor and sensory block at the T5-6 level. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed spinal cord ischemia. The patient received iv steroid treatment, but remained paraplegic. Five months following the surgery there was only partial improvement in her motor symptoms. A follow-up MRI study was consistent with a diagnosis of spinal cord ischemia. In this case of paraplegia following thoracic surgery for lung resection, epidural anesthesia/analgesia was not used. The MRI demonstrated evidence of spinal cord ischemia, and no evidence of cord compression. This case highlights that etiologies other than epidural intervention, such as injury to the spinal segmental arteries during thoracotomy, should be considered as potential causes of cord ischemia and resultant paraplegia in this surgical population.

  15. Locomotor recovery after spinal cord hemisection/contusion injures in bonnet monkeys: footprint testing--a minireview.

    PubMed

    Rangasamy, Suresh Babu

    2013-07-01

    Spinal cord injuries usually produce loss or impairment of sensory, motor and reflex function below the level of damage. In the absence of functional regeneration or manipulations that promote regeneration, spontaneous improvements in motor functions occur due to the activation of multiple compensatory mechanisms in animals and humans following the partial spinal cord injury. Many studies were performed on quantitative evaluation of locomotor recovery after induced spinal cord injury in animals using behavioral tests and scoring techniques. Although few studies on rodents have led to clinical trials, it would appear imperative to use nonhuman primates such as macaque monkeys in order to relate the research outcomes to recovery of functions in humans. In this review, we will discuss some of our research evidences concerning the degree of spontaneous recovery in bipedal locomotor functions of bonnet monkeys that underwent spinal cord hemisection/contusion lesions. To our knowledge, this is the first report to discuss on the extent of spontaneous recovery in bipedal locomotion of macaque monkeys through the application of footprint analyzing technique. In addition, the results obtained were compared with the published data on recovery of quadrupedal locomotion of spinally injured rodents. We propose that the mechanisms underlying spontaneous recovery of functions in spinal cord lesioned monkeys may be correlated to the mature function of spinal pattern generator for locomotion under the impact of residual descending and afferent connections. Moreover, based on analysis of motor functions observed in locomotion in these subjected monkeys, we understand that spinal automatism and development of responses by afferent stimuli from outside the cord could possibly contribute to recovery of paralyzed hindlimbs. This report also emphasizes the functional contribution of progressive strengthening of undamaged nerve fibers through a collateral sprouts/synaptic plasticity formed

  16. Brain-machine interface facilitated neurorehabilitation via spinal stimulation after spinal cord injury: Recent progress and future perspectives.

    PubMed

    Alam, Monzurul; Rodrigues, Willyam; Pham, Bau Ngoc; Thakor, Nitish V

    2016-09-01

    Restoration of motor function is one of the highest priorities in individuals afflicted with spinal cord injury (SCI). The application of brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) to neuroprostheses provides an innovative approach to treat patients with sensorimotor impairments. A BMI decodes motor intent from cortical signals to control external devices such as a computer cursor or a robotic arm. Recent BMI systems can now use these motor intent signals to directly activate paretic muscles or to modulate the spinal cord in a way that reengage dormant neuromuscular systems below the level of injury. In this perspective, we review the progress made in the development of brain-machine-spinal-cord interfaces (BMSCIs) and highlight their potential for neurorehabilitation after SCI. The advancement and application of these neuroprostheses goes beyond improved motor control. The use of BMSCI may combine repetitive physical training along with intent-driven neuromodulation to promote neurorehabilitation by facilitating activity-dependent plasticity. Strong evidence suggests that proper timing of volitional neuromodulation facilitates long-term potentiation in the neuronal circuits that can promote permanent functional recovery in SCI subjects. However, the effectiveness of these implantable neuroprostheses must take into account the fact that there will be continuous changes in the interface between the signals of intent and the actual trigger to initiate the motor action. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Human spinal cord injury: new and emerging approaches to treatment.

    PubMed

    Johnston, L

    2001-11-01

    The World Health Organization together with the Iceland Ministry of Health and Social Security sponsored a conference entitled 'Human Spinal Cord Injury: New and Emerging Approaches to Treatment' held on May 31-June 2, 2001 in Reykjavik, Iceland. To help catalyze the development of new paradigms to address spinal cord injury, the conference's overall goal was to bring in a diversity of perspectives, ranging from state-of-the-art stem cell biology to the ancient wisdom of Eastern Medicine. The purpose of this paper is to summarize the presentations of the conference's 26 speakers.

  18. Expression of Lymphatic Markers in the Adult Rat Spinal Cord.

    PubMed

    Kaser-Eichberger, Alexandra; Schroedl, Falk; Bieler, Lara; Trost, Andrea; Bogner, Barbara; Runge, Christian; Tempfer, Herbert; Zaunmair, Pia; Kreutzer, Christina; Traweger, Andreas; Reitsamer, Herbert A; Couillard-Despres, Sebastien

    2016-01-01

    Under physiological conditions, lymphatic vessels are thought to be absent from the central nervous system (CNS), although they are widely distributed within the rest of the body. Recent work in the eye, i.e., another organ regarded as alymphatic, revealed numerous cells expressing lymphatic markers. As the latter can be involved in the response to pathological conditions, we addressed the presence of cells expressing lymphatic markers within the spinal cord by immunohistochemistry. Spinal cord of young adult Fisher rats was scrutinized for the co-expression of the lymphatic markers PROX1 and LYVE-1 with the cell type markers Iba1, CD68, PGP9.5, OLIG2. Rat skin served as positive control for the lymphatic markers. PROX1-immunoreactivity was detected in many nuclei throughout the spinal cord white and gray matter. These nuclei showed no association with LYVE-1. Expression of LYVE-1 could only be detected in cells at the spinal cord surface and in cells closely associated with blood vessels. These cells were found to co-express Iba1, a macrophage and microglia marker. Further, double labeling experiments using CD68, another marker found in microglia and macrophages, also displayed co-localization in the Iba1+ cells located at the spinal cord surface and those apposed to blood vessels. On the other hand, PROX1-expressing cells found in the parenchyma were lacking Iba1 or PGP9.5, but a significant fraction of those cells showed co-expression of the oligodendrocyte lineage marker OLIG2. Intriguingly, following spinal cord injury, LYVE-1-expressing cells assembled and reorganized into putative pre-vessel structures. As expected, the rat skin used as positive controls revealed classical lymphatic vessels, displaying PROX1+ nuclei surrounded by LYVE-1-immunoreactivity. Classical lymphatics were not detected in adult rat spinal cord. Nevertheless, numerous cells expressing either LYVE-1 or PROX1 were identified. Based on their localization and overlapping expression with

  19. Rodent spinal cord injury models for studies of axon regeneration.

    PubMed

    Steward, Oswald; Willenberg, Rafer

    2017-01-01

    For over a century, axon regeneration has been considered the Holy Grail for spinal cord injury (SCI) repair. Although there are other factors that could contribute to improving function, restoring the long motor and sensory tracts that are interrupted by SCI has the greatest potential for actually reversing paralysis, restoring the brain's control of autonomic functions mediated by sympathetic and parasympathetic circuits of the spinal cord and restoring sensation. Accordingly and in keeping with the overall theme of this special issue, this review focuses narrowly on rodent SCI models for studies of axon regeneration.

  20. Spinal cord stimulation in pain management: a review.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Young Hoon

    2012-07-01

    Spinal cord stimulation has become a widely used and efficient alternative for the management of refractory chronic pain that is unresponsive to conservative therapies. Technological improvements have been considerable and the current neuromodulation devices are both extremely sophisticated and reliable in obtaining good results for various clinical situations of chronic pain, such as failed back surgery syndrome, complex regional pain syndrome, ischemic and coronary artery disease. This technique is likely to possess a savings in costs compared with alternative therapy strategies despite its high initial cost. Spinal cord stimulation continues to be a valuable tool in the treatment of chronic disabling pain.

  1. Magnetic Resonance Characterization of Axonal Response to Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-10-01

    The STEAM DW imaging sequence was used to acquire axial images of the cervical spinal cord (C4-C5) in six healthy volunteers (3 female, age = 18 – 32...years), using an eight-channel cervical -thoracic-lumbar (CTL) phased-array RF receive coil, with the first three channels activated. In the first...of this study was to use the ihMT imaging technique to acquire a global myelin-specific image over the cervical spinal cord in the sagittal plane. A

  2. Acute Management of Nutritional Demands after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Thibault-Halman, Ginette; Casha, Steven; Singer, Shirley

    2011-01-01

    Abstract A systematic review of the literature was performed to address pertinent clinical questions regarding nutritional management in the setting of acute spinal cord injury (SCI). Specific metabolic challenges are present following spinal cord injury. The acute stage is characterized by a reduction in metabolic activity, as well as a negative nitrogen balance that cannot be corrected, even with aggressive nutritional support. Metabolic demands need to be accurately monitored to avoid overfeeding. Enteral feeding is the optimal route following SCI. When oral feeding is not possible, nasogastric, followed by nasojejunal, then by percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy, if necessary, is suggested. PMID:20373845

  3. Cell therapy for spinal cord injury informed by electromagnetic waves.

    PubMed

    Finnegan, Jack; Ye, Hui

    2016-10-01

    Spinal cord injury devastates the CNS, besetting patients with symptoms including but not limited to: paralysis, autonomic nervous dysfunction, pain disorders and depression. Despite the identification of several molecular and genetic factors, a reliable regenerative therapy has yet to be produced for this terminal disease. Perhaps the missing piece of this puzzle will be discovered within endogenous electrotactic cellular behaviors. Neurons and stem cells both show mediated responses (growth rate, migration, differentiation) to electromagnetic waves, including direct current electric fields. This review analyzes the pathophysiology of spinal cord injury, the rationale for regenerative cell therapy and the evidence for directing cell therapy via electromagnetic waves shown by in vitro experiments.

  4. Spinal cord stimulation for neuropathic pain: current perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Wolter, Tilman

    2014-01-01

    Neuropathic pain constitutes a significant portion of chronic pain. Patients with neuropathic pain are usually more heavily burdened than patients with nociceptive pain. They suffer more often from insomnia, anxiety, and depression. Moreover, analgesic medication often has an insufficient effect on neuropathic pain. Spinal cord stimulation constitutes a therapy alternative that, to date, remains underused. In the last 10 to 15 years, it has undergone constant technical advancement. This review gives an overview of the present practice of spinal cord stimulation for chronic neuropathic pain and current developments such as high-frequency stimulation and peripheral nerve field stimulation. PMID:25429237

  5. Motor cortex changes in spinal cord injury: a TMS study.

    PubMed

    Saturno, Eleonora; Bonato, Claudio; Miniussi, Carlo; Lazzaro, Vincenzodi; Callea, Leonardo

    2008-12-01

    Using paired pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) paradigms, we studied cortical excitability in a patient with spinal cord lesion. During posterior tibial nerve stimulation, the contextual flexion of hand fingers contralateral to the stimulated lower limb had suggested a change in motor cortex excitability. Results showed a decrease in the activity of motor cortex inhibitory circuits. This could suggest that in spinal cord injury, just as in stroke and peripheral deafferentation, a disinhibition of latent synapses within the motor cortex and the rewriting of a new motor map can occur.

  6. Expression of Lymphatic Markers in the Adult Rat Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Kaser-Eichberger, Alexandra; Schroedl, Falk; Bieler, Lara; Trost, Andrea; Bogner, Barbara; Runge, Christian; Tempfer, Herbert; Zaunmair, Pia; Kreutzer, Christina; Traweger, Andreas; Reitsamer, Herbert A.; Couillard-Despres, Sebastien

    2016-01-01

    Under physiological conditions, lymphatic vessels are thought to be absent from the central nervous system (CNS), although they are widely distributed within the rest of the body. Recent work in the eye, i.e., another organ regarded as alymphatic, revealed numerous cells expressing lymphatic markers. As the latter can be involved in the response to pathological conditions, we addressed the presence of cells expressing lymphatic markers within the spinal cord by immunohistochemistry. Spinal cord of young adult Fisher rats was scrutinized for the co-expression of the lymphatic markers PROX1 and LYVE-1 with the cell type markers Iba1, CD68, PGP9.5, OLIG2. Rat skin served as positive control for the lymphatic markers. PROX1-immunoreactivity was detected in many nuclei throughout the spinal cord white and gray matter. These nuclei showed no association with LYVE-1. Expression of LYVE-1 could only be detected in cells at the spinal cord surface and in cells closely associated with blood vessels. These cells were found to co-express Iba1, a macrophage and microglia marker. Further, double labeling experiments using CD68, another marker found in microglia and macrophages, also displayed co-localization in the Iba1+ cells located at the spinal cord surface and those apposed to blood vessels. On the other hand, PROX1-expressing cells found in the parenchyma were lacking Iba1 or PGP9.5, but a significant fraction of those cells showed co-expression of the oligodendrocyte lineage marker OLIG2. Intriguingly, following spinal cord injury, LYVE-1-expressing cells assembled and reorganized into putative pre-vessel structures. As expected, the rat skin used as positive controls revealed classical lymphatic vessels, displaying PROX1+ nuclei surrounded by LYVE-1-immunoreactivity. Classical lymphatics were not detected in adult rat spinal cord. Nevertheless, numerous cells expressing either LYVE-1 or PROX1 were identified. Based on their localization and overlapping expression with

  7. Cystic Abnormalities of the Spinal Cord and Vertebral Column.

    PubMed

    da Costa, Ronaldo C; Cook, Laurie B

    2016-03-01

    Cystic lesions of the vertebral column and spinal cord are important differential diagnoses in dogs with signs of spinal cord disease. Synovial cysts are commonly associated with degenerative joint disease and usually affect the cervical and lumbosacral regions. Arachnoid diverticulum (previously known as cyst) is seen in the cervical region of large breed dogs and thoracolumbar region of small breed dogs. This article reviews the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of these and other, less common, cystic lesions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Male fertility and sexual function after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Brown, D J; Hill, S T; Baker, H W G

    2006-01-01

    Spinal cord injury has an enormous impact upon the sexual relationship of a man and his partner. Erection may be partial or absent, orgasm altered or impossible, and fertility severely impaired. New understanding of the physiology of sexual function and improved treatment can enable most cord-injured men to achieve erections suitable for sexual satisfaction. Modern methods of sperm collection and fertility treatment mean that many can also be fathers. The best results are obtained by a team approach involving rehabilitation and reproductive medicine clinicians, nurses, spinal cord injury specialists and counselors with the cord-injured man and his partner. Erections can be achieved by drugs, such as sildenafil, that block phosphodiesterase 5, prolonging the action of nitric oxide with resultant smooth muscle relaxation. Intracavernosal prostaglandin E1 and mechanical systems, such as vacuum pumps and constriction rings, are also effective. Sexual gratification can be promoted in the context of an understanding relationship in which the cord-injured person can gain pleasure from pleasing his partner and also from his partner's exploration of erotogenic areas not affected by the spinal cord injury. An emphasis on the broader view of sexuality in relationships allows for a continuance and strengthening of bonds between the couple. Vibration ejaculation or electroejaculation can be used to collect semen. For a limited period in the acute phase, usually for about 6-12 days after injury, normal semen can be obtained by electroejaculation from some cord-injured men. With chronic spinal cord injury the semen is of variable quality. Some patients have necrospermia, which may be improved by regular ejaculation. Others have poor quality semen or spermatogenic disorders and, in this situation, in vitro fertilization techniques must be used to achieve parenthood. Trials of assisted ejaculation help individualize cost-effective management of the infertility.

  9. Magnetic Resonance Characterization of Axonal Response to Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-02-01

    injury . They will supervise the creation of the cervical spine injuries , care of the animals, sacrifice and perfusion fixation, and, after completion...cord injury . They will supervise the creation of the cervical spine injuries , care of the animals, sacrifice and perfusion fixation, and, after...AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-10-1-0715 TITLE: Magnetic Resonance Characterization of Axonal Response to Spinal Cord Injury PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR

  10. Midodrine improves ejaculation in spinal cord injured men.

    PubMed

    Soler, J M; Previnaire, J G; Plante, P; Denys, P; Chartier-Kastler, E

    2007-11-01

    We evaluated the effect of the alpha1-adrenergic agonist midodrine given orally for anejaculation in spinal cord injured men. A total of 185 spinal cord injured patients who reported absent ejaculation during sexual intercourse and who failed to respond to penile vibratory stimulation were treated with midodrine 30 to 120 minutes before a new stimulation. The procedure was repeated weekly, increasing doses by 7.5 mg to a maximum of 30 mg. Cardiovascular effects were monitored throughout the procedure. Antegrade or retrograde ejaculation was achieved in 102 spinal cord injured men (64.6%). A positive response was more frequent in patients with complete lesions (American Spinal Injury Association A) and upper motor neuron lesions above T10. Midodrine induced a significant but moderate increase (maximum 10 mm Hg) in mean arterial pressure in all patients. The highest systolic blood pressure (more than 200 mm Hg) was seen in patients with quadriplegia. No other significant side effect was recorded. The average dose of midodrine required for ejaculation was 18.7 mg. Midodrine is a safe and effi