[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Spinal cord injuries are highly disabling and deadly injuries. Currently, few studies focus on non-traumatic spinal cord injuries, and there is little information regarding the risk factors for complete injuries. This study aims to describe the demographics and the injury characteristics for both traumatic and non-traumatic spinal cord injuries and to explore the risk factors for complete spinal cord injuries.
A retrospective study was performed by reviewing the medical records of 3,832 patients with spinal cord injuries who were first admitted to the sampled hospitals in Guangdong, China. The demographics and injury characteristics of the patients were described and compared between the different groups using the chi-square test. Logistic regression was conducted to analyze the risk factors for complete spinal cord injuries.
The proportion of patients increased from 7.0% to 14.0% from 2003 to 2011. The male-to-female ratio was 3.0∶1. The major cause of spinal cord injuries was traffic accidents (21.7%). Many of the injured were workers (36.2%), peasants (22.8%), and unemployed people (13.9%); these occupations accounted for 72.9% of the total sample. A multivariate logistic regression model revealed that the OR (95% CI) for male gender compared to female gender was 1.25 (1.07-1.89), the OR (95%CI) for having a spinal fracture was 1.56 (1.35-2.60), the OR (95%CI) for having a thoracic injury was 1.23 (1.10-2.00), and the OR (95%CI) for having complications was 2.47 (1.96-3.13).
The proportion of males was higher than the proportion of females. Workers, peasants and the unemployed comprised the high-risk occupational categories. Male gender, having a spinal fracture, having a thoracic injury, and having complications were the major risk factors for a complete injury. We recommend that preventive measures should focus on high-risk populations, such as young males.
PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(1):e84733. · 3.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective: To evaluate the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of intravenous infusion of allogenic mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in ankylosing spondylitis (AS) patients who are refractory to or could not tolerate the side effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Method: AS patients enrolled in this study received 4 intravenous infusions (IVI) of MSCs on days 0,7,14, and 21. The percentage of ASAS20 responders (the primary endpoint) at the 4th week and the mean ASAS20 response duration (the secondary endpoint) were used to assess treatment response to MSC infusion and duration of the therapeutic effects. Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Score Containing C-reactive Protein (ASDAS-CRP) and other pre-established evaluation indices were also adopted to evaluate the clinical effects. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed to detect changes of bone marrow edema in the spine. The safety of this treatment was also evaluated. Results: Thirty-one patients were included, and the percentage of ASAS20 responders reached 77.4% at the 4th week and the mean ASAS20 response duration was 7.1 weeks. The mean ASDAS-CRP score decreased from 3.6±0.6 to 2.4±0.5 at the 4th week, and then increased to 3.2±0.8 at the 20th week. The average total inflammation extent (TIE) detected by MRI decreased from 533,482.5 at baseline to 480,692.3 at the 4th week (p>0.05) and 400,547.2 at the 20th week (p<0.05). No adverse effects were noted. Conclusion: Intravenous infusion of MSCs is a feasible, safe, and promising treatment for patients with AS.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: The objectives of this study were to describe our surgical management with a modified total en bloc spondylectomy (TES) and to evaluate the clinical effects in patients with thoracolumbar tumors. METHODS: Sixteen consecutive patients with thoracolumbar neoplasms underwent a modified TES via single posterior approach followed by dorsoventral reconstruction from December 2008 to July 2011. Details of the modified technique were described and the patients' clinical information was retrospectively reviewed and analyzed. RESULTS: Significant improvements in neurological function were achieved in most of the patients. Local pain or radicular leg pain was relieved postoperatively. The mean operation time was 7.2 h, with an average blood loss of 2,300 ml. No major complications, instrumentation failure or local recurrence was found at the final follow-up. Five patients died of the disease during mean 14-month (3.0-23) follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: The modified TES with a single posterior approach is feasible, safe and effective for thoracolumbar spine tumors.
European Spine Journal 08/2012; · 2.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, it has been proved that methylprednisolone has inhibition effect on the proliferation of endogenous neural progenitor cells (NPCs) after spinal cord injury (SCI). Similar effect has also been found on NPCs cultured in vitro. However, the mechanism remains to be fully delineated. The purpose of this study is to investigate the potential molecular mechanism of this effect in NPCs cultured in vitro by gene expression profiling. Fetal mouse brain-derived NPCs were divided into 2 groups: NPCs incubated with methylprednisolone as a model of the methylprednisolone treatment after SCI, and without methylprednisolone as the control group. After the cell quantitative analysis and CCK-8 assay, the microarray analysis was carried out. Genes differentially expressed between NPCs treated with and without methylprednisolone were extracted. It was observed that the expression of 143 genes, including many members of distinct families, such as hypoxia inducible factors and neurotransmitter receptors, were significantly changed in response to the methylprednisolone treatment. Our results provide global molecular insights into the mechanisms of methylprednisolone-induced proliferation inhibition effect and suggest that EdnrB may play an important role in this effect.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Raf kinase inhibitor protein (RKIP) is a tumor suppressor that protects against metastasis and genomic instability. RKIP is downregulated in many types of tumors, although the mechanism for this remains unknown. MicroRNAs silence target genes via translational inhibition or target mRNA degradation, and are thus important regulators of gene expression. In the current study, we found that miR-224 expression is significantly upregulated in breast cancer cell lines, and especially in highly invasive MDA-MB-231 cells, compared to human normal breast epithelial cells. In addition, miR-224 inhibits RKIP gene expression by directly targeting its 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR). Moreover, metastasis, as assayed by Transwell migration, 3D growth in Matrigel, and wound healing, was enhanced by ectopic expression of miR-224 and inhibited by miR-224 downregulation. Promotion of metastasis in response to miR-224 downregulation was associated with derepression of the stroma-associated RKIP target genes, CXCR4, MMP1, and OPN, which are involved in breast tumor metastasis to the bone. Taken together, our data indicate that miR-224 play an important role in metastasis of human breast cancer cells to the bone by directly suppressing the RKIP tumor suppressor.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 07/2012; 425(2):127-33. · 2.28 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a chronic autoimmune disease, and the precise pathogenesis is largely unknown at present. Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) with immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory potential and Th17/Treg cells with a reciprocal relationship regulated by BMSCs have been reported to be involved in some autoimmune disorders. Here we studied the biological and immunological characteristics of BMSCs, the frequency and phenotype of CCR4+CCR6+ Th/Treg cells and their interaction in vitro in AS.
The biological and immunomodulation characteristics of BMSCs were examined by induced multiple-differentiation and two-way mixed peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) reactions or after stimulation with phytohemagglutinin, respectively. The interactions of BMSCs and PBMCs were detected with a direct-contact co-culturing system. CCR4+CCR6+ Th/Treg cells and surface markers of BMSCs were assayed using flow cytometry.
The AS-BMSCs at active stage showed normal proliferation, cell viability, surface markers and multiple differentiation characteristics, but significantly reduced immunomodulation potential (decreased 68 ± 14%); the frequencies of Treg and Fox-P3+ cells in AS-PBMCs decreased, while CCR4+CCR6+ Th cells increased, compared with healthy donors. Moreover, the AS-BMSCs induced imbalance in the ratio of CCR4+CCR6+ Th/Treg cells by reducing Treg/PBMCs and increasing CCR4+CCR6+ Th/PBMCs, and also reduced Fox-P3+ cells when co-cultured with PBMCs. Correlation analysis showed that the immunomodulation potential of BMSCs has significant negative correlations with the ratio of CCR4+CCR6+ Th to Treg cells in peripheral blood.
The immunomodulation potential of BMSCs is reduced and the ratio of CCR4+CCR6+ Th/Treg cells is imbalanced in AS. The BMSCs with reduced immunomodulation potential may play a novel role in AS pathogenesis by inducing CCR4+CCR6+ Th/Treg cell imbalance.
Arthritis research & therapy 02/2011; 13(1):R29. · 4.27 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study is to determine whether regulatory T cells (Treg cells) are increased in patients with chronic osteomyelitis and whether they suppress cellular immune responses to the bacteria. The frequency of circulating CD4(+)CD25(+) and CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+) T cells in 30 chronic osteomyelitis patients were compared with 30 healthy donors. Treg-depleted PBMCs from the patients were cultured together with autologous antigen, unfractioned PBMCs used as the control. The cell proliferation and production of IL-10 and IFN-γ were compared with those of the control. The results demonstrated that frequencies of CD4(+)CD25(+) (10.85±2.82% vs 6.08±1.62%, P<.001) and CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+) T cells (2.06±0.83% vs 1.43%±0.51%, P<.001) in blood from chronic osteomyelitis patients were significantly higher than in healthy donors. The level of IL-10 (117±91 pg/ml vs 323±189 pg/ml, P<.001) in supernatants of Treg-depleted PBMCs was decreased. Cell proliferation (4489±11876 cpm vs 3547±1517 cpm, P<.05) and IFN-γ (875±203 pg/ml vs 405±129 pg/ml, P<.001) production by CD4(+)CD25(+) T cell in response to antigen was significantly inhibited by CD4(+)CD25(+) T cells. These results indicate that specific Tregs can depress the T cell mediated immune responses to bacteria in chronic osteomyelitis, and may play an important role in the persistence of bacteria.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to test the sensitivity and specificity of diffusion-weighted MRI for the detection of acute spinal cord injury. Forty female New Zealand white rabbits were randomly divided into four groups: the mild, moderate and severe injury groups, and the control (sham operation) group. Contusion of the spinal cord was induced using a weight-drop impactor. All animals were imaged using T1-weighted, T2-weighted, and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) sequences at 30 minutes, 6 hours, and 24 hours after injury. One animal from each group was killed at each time point for histologic examination of the spinal cord. DWI had a sensitivity of 100% at all time points, whereas T2-weighted MRI had a sensitivity of 43.33% at 30 minutes after injury, 81.48% at 6 hours after injury, and 95.83% at 24 hours after injury. Conversely, the specificity of DWI was lower than that of T2-weighted MRI at all time points. One animal in the control group had a non-specific high signal on DWI. Significant systematic differences were seen between DWI and T2-weighted MRI at both 30 minutes and 6 hours after injury. The apparent diffusion coefficient values of the lesion were lower than those of adjacent unaffected regions in the mild and moderate injury groups, but higher than adjacent unaffected regions in the severe injury group. The histological findings were reliably correlated with the magnetic resonance findings. We found that DWI has a higher sensitivity, but a lower specificity, than conventional MRI for the detection of early pathological changes after contusive injury.
Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 09/2010; 17(9):1173-9. · 1.25 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Diffusion-weighted MRI (DWI) has been proposed as a method to evaluate the integrity of white matter tracts in the spinal cord. The integrity of the spinal cord reflects the exact stage of traumatic injury. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of DWI in SCIWORA in the thoracic spine. A total of five patients with thoracic SCIWORA underwent MRI and DWI within 48 h of injury. DWIs were obtained with a single-shot fast spin-echo (SSFSE) sequence; TI- and T2-weighted images were obtained with spin echo. Consistency among the clinical presentation, outcome, MRI and DWI was analysed. There was complete injury in one patient and partial in four patients. Four patients showed hypointense T1-weighted signal and hyperintense T2-weighted signal, and one patient had no changes on MRI. All patients showed hyperintense signal on DWI. Two patients made good recoveries (ASIA grades D and E), one had a moderate recovery (ASIA grade C), and two showed minimal or no improvement (ASIA grade A or B) in neurological function. Patients with no cord changes on MRI showed abnormal signals on DWI. It is likely that in the future DWI may provide important information complimentary to conventional MRI and allow a better prognostic evaluation of recovery from SCIWORA.
International Orthopaedics 07/2007; 31(3):375-83. · 2.32 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To observe the effects of cryopreserved olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) transplantation on axonal regeneration and functional recovery following spinal cord injury in adult rats.
Twenty-four rats were divided into experimental and control groups, each group having 12 rats. The spinal cord injury was established by transecting the spinal cord at T10 level with microsurgery scissors. OECs were purified from SD rat olfactory bulb and cultured in DMEM (Dulbecco's minimum essential medium) and cryopreserved (-120 degree) for two weeks. OECs suspension [(1-1.4)x10(5)/ul] was transplanted into transected spinal cord, while the DMEM solution was injected instead in the control group. At 6 and 12 weeks after transplantation, the rats were evaluated with climbing test and MEP (moter evoked potentials) monitoring. The samples of spinal cord were procured and studied with histological and immunohistochemical stainings.
At 6 weeks after transplantation, all of the rats in both transplanted and control groups were paraplegic, and MEPs could not be recorded. Morphology of transplanted OECs was normal, and OECs were interfused with host well. Axons could regrow into gap tissue between the spinal cords. Both OECs and regrown axons were immunoreactive for MBP. No regrown axons were found in the control group. At 12 weeks after transplantation, 2 rats (2/7) had lower extremities muscle contraction, 2 rats (2/7) had hip and/or knee active movement, and MEP of 5 rats (5/7) could be recorded in the calf in the transplantation group. None of the rats (7/7) in the control group had functional improvement, and none had MEPs recorded. In the transplanted group, histological and immunohistochemical methods showed the number of transplanted OECs reduced and some regrown axons had reached the end of transected spinal cord. However, no regrown axons could be seen except scar formation in the control group.
Cryopreserved OECs could integrated with the host and promote regrowing axons across the transected spinal cord ends.
Chinese Journal of Traumatology (English Edition) 07/2004; 7(3):179-83.