Chinese Scientists Have Developed A Hydrogel Scaffold That May Help Regenerate Nerves After Spinal Cord Injury
By modifying photo-crosslinked gelatin hydrogels with a cationic polymer, polyamidoamine, and an anti-inflammatory cytokine, interleukin-10 (IL-10), the researchers found that this new scaffold may strengthen tissue remodeling and promotes axonal regeneration in the spinal cord.Spinal cord injury triggers axonal damage and nerve cell death, leading to abnormal spinal cord function. Spinal cord injury can be divided into two stages, primary injury and secondary injury. Secondary injury is caused by primary injury and can last for several weeks; The infiltration and activation of immune cells induced by spinal cord injury creates an inflammatory microenvironment characterized by injury-associated molecular patterns that exacerbate secondary injury and neurological recovery.
With its ability to effectively clear DAMPs and continuously release IL-10, this dual-function immunomodulatory hydrogel not only reduces the pro-inflammatory response of macrophages and microglias, but also enhances the neurogenic differentiation of the body's neural stem cells. In a fully cross-sectional SCI mouse model, the scaffold counteracts the effects of the inflammatory microenvironment by inhibiting cytokine production and helps regulate immune cell activation leading to nerve regeneration and axon growth without scarring.
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