In February 2010, a study reporting the successful treatment of spinal cord injury in dogs using cord blood was released – with researchers confident that the this technique has many potential applications in the treatment of human spinal cord injury.
While previous research on spinal cord injury has typically used rats, this study used dogs which have a spinal cord structure more similar to humans. Within the test group, those dogs that received cellular transplants exhibited gradual improvement in hind limb locomotion two to three weeks after the transplant and also demonstrated reduced cyst and injury size.
The study was a collaborative effort between a team of doctors from the Department of Veterinary Science and Veterinary Anatomy at Konkuk University in Seoul Korea.
Dr Han, President and founder of Histostem, said the research demonstrated a new less invasive method of transplanting cord blood stem cells which avoids surgical exposure and allows the cells to be more precisely transplanted into the spinal cord.