Topic Editors

Department of Neurosurgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
College of Medicine, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32816, USA

Clinical, Translational and Basic Research on Brain and Spinal Injury and Disease

Abstract submission deadline
closed (31 October 2023)
Manuscript submission deadline
closed (31 December 2023)
Viewed by
12387

Topic Information

Dear Colleagues,

Brain and spinal cord injuries are a significant share of trauma-related causes in the neurosurgical world. While advances have been made within the past few decades with regard to regaining partial loss of motor movement and providing external mechanical support for damaged neurological function, there is still a gap in our knowledge on directly treating and improving the damaged spinal cord and/or brain.

Spinal cord injury is associated with many life-threatening complications that surgeons must encounter when dealing with patients' short- and long-term care. Therefore, a push for the advancement of spinal cord and brain injury research would dramatically reduce the incidence of debilitating outcomes that patients face with such a diagnosis.

The inherent inhibitory nature of the central nervous system due to limited plasticity and inhibitory factors produced from myelin degradation is widely recognized. There is a variety of therapeutic strategies that are currently being investigated which are not limited to mesenchymal stem cells, neural stem cells, biomaterials, or antibodies. Some of these therapies have shown promise but failed to deliver in clinical trials and need more time and research to translate such promise into measurable and favorable outcomes.

Therefore, we will consider articles of all types that explore the clinical, translational, and basic research on the brain and spinal injury and disease. In addition, we are seeking contributions that investigate novel, emerging methods of rehabilitation for spinal cord injuries.

Dr. Brandon Lucke-Wold
Dr. William Dodd
Topic Editors

Keywords

  • spinal cord injury
  • brain injury
  • spinal trauma
  • brain trauma
  • translational research
  • clinical research
  • basic research
  • neurological function
  • neurological gap
  • motor strength

Participating Journals

Journal Name Impact Factor CiteScore Launched Year First Decision (median) APC
Biomedicines
biomedicines
4.7 3.7 2013 15.4 Days CHF 2600
Cells
cells
6.0 9.0 2012 16.6 Days CHF 2700
Diseases
diseases
3.7 - 2013 18.8 Days CHF 1800
Healthcare
healthcare
2.8 2.7 2013 19.5 Days CHF 2700
Journal of Clinical Medicine
jcm
3.9 5.4 2012 17.9 Days CHF 2600

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Published Papers (10 papers)

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17 pages, 1240 KiB  
Article
Study to Determine the Prevalence of Menstrual Migraine in Reproductive-Age Women in Saudi Arabia
by Zainah Al-Qahtani, Bayapa Reddy Narapureddy, Lingala Kalyan Viswanath Reddy, Hassan Yahya M. Asiri, Ahmed Abdullah H. Alsulami, Nawaf Khalid Ahmed Hassan, Rammas Abdullah Shawkhan, Nouf Abdulraheem Hamood, Hussein Ahmed M. Almahdi, Yousef Yahya Al Qasim, Yahya Ayed Mohammed Al Majbar, Abdullah Ali A. Swadi, Abdulbari Hadi H. Asiri and Bassam Ahmed A. Almaker
Healthcare 2024, 12(3), 317; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12030317 - 25 Jan 2024
Viewed by 725
Abstract
Background: Migraine is a common health condition in both men and women. Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects many women during their menstrual cycle, with around 50–60% of women with migraine attacks experiencing menstrual headaches. Most have mild symptoms, but 5–8% suffer from moderate to [...] Read more.
Background: Migraine is a common health condition in both men and women. Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects many women during their menstrual cycle, with around 50–60% of women with migraine attacks experiencing menstrual headaches. Most have mild symptoms, but 5–8% suffer from moderate to severe symptoms, causing distress and functional issues. Pure menstrual migraine (PMM) occurs in about 50% of women with migraine, and it can be debilitating in terms of frequency and severity. This information is crucial for Saudi Arabian medical professionals to provide better care and support, improving the quality of life for women with PMS and menstrual migraine (MM) attacks. Objectives: To estimate the prevalence of MM in women, to evaluate the severity and frequency of MM in women with PMS, and to identify potential risk factors aggravating MM in women with PMS in Saudi Arabia. Methodology: A cross-sectional community-based study was conducted on reproductive-aged (18–50 years) women who had regular menstrual cycles and were diagnosed with PMS, using a self-administered questionnaire between December 2022 to May 2023 in Saudi Arabia. Results: Out of the 2130 female participants, 397 (18.6%) had migraine. Among these 397 migraine sufferers, 230 (57.9%) experienced MM, while 167 (42.1%) had non-MM. In reproductive women in general, MM occurred in 10.7% of cases, while non-MM was observed in 7.8%. There is a correlation between increasing BMI and an increased incidence of MM. About one-third of the participants experienced moderate disability due to migraine attacks, with 134 (33.8%) individuals affected. Additionally, most MM sufferers missed at least 3 days of work in the last 3 months due to their condition. Conclusions: Migraine attacks occurring during the menstrual cycle impair the ability to engage in social, physical, household, and academic activities, often hindering the fulfillment of professional commitments. To gain a deeper understanding of menstrual and non-menstrual migraine attacks, it is essential to conduct extensive prospective studies aimed at developing effective management strategies. Full article
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26 pages, 3509 KiB  
Article
Activated Human Adipose Tissue Transplantation Promotes Sensorimotor Recovery after Acute Spinal Cord Contusion in Rats
by Maxime Bonnet, Céline Ertlen, Mostafa Seblani, Jean-Michel Brezun, Thelma Coyle, Cristina Cereda, Gianvincenzo Zuccotti, Mattia Colli, Christophe Desouches, Patrick Decherchi, Stephana Carelli and Tanguy Marqueste
Cells 2024, 13(2), 182; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells13020182 - 17 Jan 2024
Viewed by 1636
Abstract
Traumatic spinal cord injuries (SCIs) often result in sensory, motor, and vegetative function loss below the injury site. Although preclinical results have been promising, significant solutions for SCI patients have not been achieved through translating repair strategies to clinical trials. In this study, [...] Read more.
Traumatic spinal cord injuries (SCIs) often result in sensory, motor, and vegetative function loss below the injury site. Although preclinical results have been promising, significant solutions for SCI patients have not been achieved through translating repair strategies to clinical trials. In this study, we investigated the effective potential of mechanically activated lipoaspirated adipose tissue when transplanted into the epicenter of a thoracic spinal contusion. Male Sprague Dawley rats were divided into three experimental groups: SHAM (uninjured and untreated), NaCl (spinal cord contusion with NaCl application), and AF (spinal cord contusion with transplanted activated human fat). Pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α) were measured to assess endogenous inflammation levels 14 days after injury. Sensorimotor recovery was monitored weekly for 12 weeks, and gait and electrophysiological analyses were performed at the end of this observational period. The results indicated that AF reduced endogenous inflammation post-SCI and there was a significant improvement in sensorimotor recovery. Moreover, activated adipose tissue also reinstated the segmental sensorimotor loop and the communication between supra- and sub-lesional spinal cord regions. This investigation highlights the efficacy of activated adipose tissue grafting in acute SCI, suggesting it is a promising therapeutic approach for spinal cord repair after traumatic contusion in humans. Full article
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17 pages, 3128 KiB  
Article
Early Detection of Alzheimer’s Disease in Postmenopausal Women Using Thalamic Subnuclear Volumetry
by Gwang-Won Kim, Kwangsung Park and Gwang-Woo Jeong
J. Clin. Med. 2023, 12(21), 6844; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm12216844 - 30 Oct 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 976
Abstract
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and aging are intrinsically interconnected with each other and are mediated by molecular, cellular, and biological systems. In particular, a specific pattern of brain volume atrophy is the most profound risk factor for cognitive impairment, including AD, that is directly [...] Read more.
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and aging are intrinsically interconnected with each other and are mediated by molecular, cellular, and biological systems. In particular, a specific pattern of brain volume atrophy is the most profound risk factor for cognitive impairment, including AD, that is directly linked to aging. Thus, this study aimed to investigate knowledge on the early detection of AD in postmenopausal women, focusing on the volume changes of the subcortical regions, including the thalamic subnuclei, in women with AD vs. postmenopausal women. Twenty-one women with AD and twenty-one postmenopausal women without AD underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Women with AD showed significantly reduced volumes in the hippocampus, thalamus, and amygdala compared with postmenopausal women (p < 0.05, FWE-corrected). After adjustments for age, the right hippocampal volume was found to be significantly lower in the women with AD, but the volumes of the thalamus and amygdala were relatively unaffected. The women with AD exhibited significantly reduced volume in the right laterodorsal nucleus of the thalamus compared with the postmenopausal women (p < 0.05, Bonferroni-corrected). Our findings suggest that the reduced volume of both the right laterodorsal thalamic nucleus and right hippocampus may serve as a potential biomarker for the early detection of AD in postmenopausal women. Full article
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20 pages, 1688 KiB  
Review
Improving Efficiency of Direct Pro-Neural Reprogramming: Much-Needed Aid for Neuroregeneration in Spinal Cord Injury
by Daria A. Chudakova, Ekaterina M. Samoilova, Vladimir P. Chekhonin and Vladimir P. Baklaushev
Cells 2023, 12(20), 2499; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells12202499 - 20 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1378
Abstract
Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a medical condition affecting ~2.5–4 million people worldwide. The conventional therapy for SCI fails to restore the lost spinal cord functions; thus, novel therapies are needed. Recent breakthroughs in stem cell biology and cell reprogramming revolutionized the field. [...] Read more.
Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a medical condition affecting ~2.5–4 million people worldwide. The conventional therapy for SCI fails to restore the lost spinal cord functions; thus, novel therapies are needed. Recent breakthroughs in stem cell biology and cell reprogramming revolutionized the field. Of them, the use of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) directly reprogrammed from non-neuronal somatic cells without transitioning through a pluripotent state is a particularly attractive strategy. This allows to “scale up” NPCs in vitro and, via their transplantation to the lesion area, partially compensate for the limited regenerative plasticity of the adult spinal cord in humans. As recently demonstrated in non-human primates, implanted NPCs contribute to the functional improvement of the spinal cord after injury, and works in other animal models of SCI also confirm their therapeutic value. However, direct reprogramming still remains a challenge in many aspects; one of them is low efficiency, which prevents it from finding its place in clinics yet. In this review, we describe new insights that recent works brought to the field, such as novel targets (mitochondria, nucleoli, G-quadruplexes, and others), tools, and approaches (mechanotransduction and electrical stimulation) for direct pro-neural reprogramming, including potential ones yet to be tested. Full article
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13 pages, 1907 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Adipose-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells on Peripheral Nerve Damage in a Rodent Model
by Mehmet Burak Yalçın, Ejder Saylav Bora, Mümin Alper Erdoğan, Adem Çakır and Oytun Erbaş
J. Clin. Med. 2023, 12(19), 6411; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm12196411 - 09 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1111
Abstract
Peripheral nerve damage is a significant clinical problem with limited therapeutic options. Adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ADSCs) have emerged as a promising therapeutic approach due to their regenerative potential. However, the underlying mechanisms by which ADSCs promote peripheral nerve regeneration remain unclear. In [...] Read more.
Peripheral nerve damage is a significant clinical problem with limited therapeutic options. Adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ADSCs) have emerged as a promising therapeutic approach due to their regenerative potential. However, the underlying mechanisms by which ADSCs promote peripheral nerve regeneration remain unclear. In this study, we investigated the role of syndecan-1 and heat shock protein 70 (HSP-70) in mediating the regenerative effects of ADSCs on peripheral nerves. ADSCs were characterized and isolated from the adipose tissue of rats. In vitro experiments were conducted to evaluate the ability of ADSCs to secrete syndecan-1 and HSP-70 in response to stress conditions. To evaluate the therapeutic potential of ADSCs, rats with sciatic nerve injuries were treated with ADSCs and assessed for functional recovery, nerve regeneration, and changes in syndecan-1 and HSP-70 levels. Regeneration was evaluated with Electromyography (EMG) histology. The results showed that ADSCs could secrete syndecan-1 and HSP-70 in response to stress conditions. Furthermore, ADSC treatment significantly improved functional recovery and nerve regeneration and increased syndecan-1 and HSP-70 levels in the injured nerve. On the other hand, ADSCs make improvements histologically through the influence of Nerve growth factor (NGF), Malondialdehyde (MDA), and EMG. Full article
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9 pages, 1014 KiB  
Brief Report
Propofol Affords No Protection against Delayed Cerebral Ischemia in a Mouse Model of Subarachnoid Hemorrhage
by Meizi Liu, Keshav Jayaraman, James W. Nelson, Jogender Mehla, Deepti Diwan, Ananth K. Vellimana, Gregory J. Zipfel and Umeshkumar Athiraman
Diseases 2023, 11(4), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases11040130 - 27 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1133
Abstract
Delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) is an important contributor to poor outcomes in aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) patients. We previously showed that volatile anesthetics such as isoflurane, sevoflurane and desflurane provided robust protection against SAH-induced DCI, but the impact of a more commonly used [...] Read more.
Delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) is an important contributor to poor outcomes in aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) patients. We previously showed that volatile anesthetics such as isoflurane, sevoflurane and desflurane provided robust protection against SAH-induced DCI, but the impact of a more commonly used intravenous anesthetic agent, propofol, is not known. The goal of our current study is to examine the neurovascular protective effects of propofol on SAH-induced DCI. Twelve-week-old male wild-type mice were utilized for the study. Mice underwent endovascular perforation SAH or sham surgery followed one hour later by propofol infusion through the internal jugular vein (2 mg/kg/min continuous intravenous infusion). Large artery vasospasm was assessed three days after SAH. Neurological outcome assessment was performed at baseline and then daily until animal sacrifice. Statistical analysis was performed via one-way ANOVA and two-way repeated measures ANOVA followed by the Newman–Keuls multiple comparison test with significance set at p < 0.05. Intravenous propofol did not provide any protection against large artery vasospasm or sensory–motor neurological deficits induced by SAH. Our data show that propofol did not afford significant protection against SAH-induced DCI. These results are consistent with recent clinical studies that suggest that the neurovascular protection afforded by anesthetic conditioning is critically dependent on the class of anesthetic agent. Full article
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12 pages, 267 KiB  
Article
Factors Contributing to Life-Change Adaptation in Family Caregivers of Community-Dwelling Individuals with Acquired Brain Injury
by Yuka Iwata and Etsuko Tadaka
Healthcare 2023, 11(19), 2606; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11192606 - 22 Sep 2023
Viewed by 804
Abstract
Acquired brain injury (ABI) is a public health issue that affects family caregivers, because individuals with ABI often require semi-permanent care and community support in daily living. Identifying the characteristics of family caregivers and individuals with ABI and examining life-change adaptation may provide [...] Read more.
Acquired brain injury (ABI) is a public health issue that affects family caregivers, because individuals with ABI often require semi-permanent care and community support in daily living. Identifying the characteristics of family caregivers and individuals with ABI and examining life-change adaptation may provide valuable insights. The current study sought to explore the factors contributing to life-change adaptation in family caregivers of community-dwelling individuals with ABI. As a secondary analysis, a cross-sectional study was conducted using data obtained in a previous study of 1622 family caregivers in Japan. We hypothesized that life-change adaptation in family caregivers of individuals with ABI would also be related to family caregivers’ characteristics and the characteristics of individuals with ABI. In total, 312 valid responses were analyzed using Poisson regression analysis. The results revealed that life-change adaptation in family caregivers of individuals with ABI was related to sex (prevalence ratio [PR]: 0.65, confidence interval [CI]: −0.819;−0.041) and mental health (PR: 2.04, CI: 0.354; 1.070) as family caregivers’ characteristics, and topographical disorientation (PR: 1.51, CI: 0.017; 0.805) and loss of control over behavior (PR: 1.61, CI: 0.116; 0.830) as the characteristics of individuals with ABI, after adjusting for the effects of the caregiver’s age, sex, and the duration of the caregiver’s role. The current study expands existing knowledge and provides a deeper understanding to enhance the development of specific policies for improving caregiving services and supporting families. Full article
9 pages, 391 KiB  
Article
Intraoperative Blood Pressure and Carbon Dioxide Values during Aneurysmal Repair and the Outcomes after Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage
by Umeshkumar Athiraman, Aaron J. Norris, Keshav Jayaraman, Abhijit V. Lele, Rainer Kentner, Preet Mohinder Singh, Omokhaye M. Higo, Gregory J. Zipfel and Rajat Dhar
J. Clin. Med. 2023, 12(17), 5488; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm12175488 - 24 Aug 2023
Viewed by 736
Abstract
Cerebral autoregulation impairment is a critical aspect of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH)-induced secondary brain injury and is also shown to be an independent predictor of delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) and poor neurologic outcomes. Interestingly, intraoperative hemodynamic and ventilatory parameters were shown to influence patient [...] Read more.
Cerebral autoregulation impairment is a critical aspect of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH)-induced secondary brain injury and is also shown to be an independent predictor of delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) and poor neurologic outcomes. Interestingly, intraoperative hemodynamic and ventilatory parameters were shown to influence patient outcomes after SAH. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the association of intraoperative hypotension and hypocapnia with the occurrence of angiographic vasospasm, DCI, and neurologic outcomes at discharge. Intraoperative data were collected for 390 patients with aneurysmal SAH who underwent general anesthesia for aneurysm clipping or coiling between January 2010 and May 2018. We measured the mean intraoperative blood pressure and end-tidal carbon dioxide (ETCO2), as well as the area under the curve (AUC) for the burden of hypotension: SBP below 100 or MBP below 65 and hypocapnia (ETCO2 < 30), during the intraoperative period. The outcome measures were angiographic vasospasm, DCI, and the neurologic outcomes at discharge as measured by the modified Rankin scale score (an mRS of 0–2 is a good outcome, and 3–6 is a poor outcome). Univariate and logistic regression analyses were performed to evaluate whether blood pressure (BP) and ETCO2 variables were independently associated with outcome measures. Out of 390 patients, 132 (34%) developed moderate-to-severe vasospasm, 114 (29%) developed DCI, and 46% (169) had good neurologic outcomes at discharge. None of the measured intraoperative BP and ETCO2 variables were associated with angiographic vasospasm, DCI, or poor neurologic outcomes. Our study did not identify an independent association between the degree of intraoperative hypotension or hypocapnia in relation to angiographic vasospasm, DCI, or the neurologic outcomes at discharge in SAH patients. Full article
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17 pages, 3033 KiB  
Article
Acute Circadian Disruption Due to Constant Light Promotes Caspase 1 Activation in the Mouse Hippocampus
by Pikria Ketelauri, Katerina Scharov, Charlotte von Gall and Sonja Johann
Cells 2023, 12(14), 1836; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells12141836 - 12 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1417
Abstract
In mammals, the circadian system controls various physiological processes to maintain metabolism, behavior, and immune function during a daily 24 h cycle. Although driven by a cell-autonomous core clock in the hypothalamus, rhythmic activities are entrained to external cues, such as environmental lighting [...] Read more.
In mammals, the circadian system controls various physiological processes to maintain metabolism, behavior, and immune function during a daily 24 h cycle. Although driven by a cell-autonomous core clock in the hypothalamus, rhythmic activities are entrained to external cues, such as environmental lighting conditions. Exposure to artificial light at night (ALAN) can cause circadian disruption and thus is linked to an increased occurrence of civilization diseases in modern society. Moreover, alterations of circadian rhythms and dysregulation of immune responses, including inflammasome activation, are common attributes of neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’, Parkinson’s, and Huntington’s disease. Although there is evidence that the inflammasome in the hippocampus is activated by stress, the direct effect of circadian disruption on inflammasome activation remains poorly understood. In the present study, we aimed to analyze whether exposure to constant light (LL) affects inflammasome activation in the mouse hippocampus. In addition to decreased circadian power and reduced locomotor activity, we found cleaved caspase 1 significantly elevated in the hippocampus of mice exposed to LL. However, we did not find hallmarks of inflammasome priming or cleavage of pro-interleukins. These findings suggest that acute circadian disruption leads to an assembled “ready to start” inflammasome, which may turn the brain more vulnerable to additional aversive stimuli. Full article
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12 pages, 2332 KiB  
Perspective
In Vitro Effects of Methylprednisolone over Oligodendroglial Cells: Foresight to Future Cell Therapies
by Ulises Gómez-Pinedo, Jordi A. Matías-Guiu, Denise Ojeda-Hernandez, Sarah de la Fuente-Martin, Ola Mohamed-Fathy Kamal, Maria Soledad Benito-Martin, Belen Selma-Calvo, Paloma Montero-Escribano and Jorge Matías-Guiu
Cells 2023, 12(11), 1515; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells12111515 - 30 May 2023
Viewed by 1419
Abstract
The implantation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells may be a useful therapeutic strategy for targeting remyelination. However, it is yet to be established how these cells behave after implantation and whether they retain the capacity to proliferate or differentiate into myelin-forming oligodendrocytes. One essential [...] Read more.
The implantation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells may be a useful therapeutic strategy for targeting remyelination. However, it is yet to be established how these cells behave after implantation and whether they retain the capacity to proliferate or differentiate into myelin-forming oligodendrocytes. One essential issue is the creation of administration protocols and determining which factors need to be well established. There is controversy around whether these cells may be implanted simultaneously with corticosteroid treatment, which is widely used in many clinical situations. This study assesses the influence of corticosteroids on the capacity for proliferation and differentiation and the survival of human oligodendroglioma cells. Our findings show that corticosteroids reduce the capacity of these cells to proliferate and to differentiate into oligodendrocytes and decrease cell survival. Thus, their effect does not favour remyelination; this is consistent with the results of studies with rodent cells. In conclusion, protocols for the administration of oligodendrocyte lineage cells with the aim of repopulating oligodendroglial niches or repairing demyelinated axons should not include corticosteroids, given the evidence that the effects of these drugs may undermine the objectives of cell transplantation. Full article
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