Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Pronounced species divergence in corticospinal tract reorganization and functional recovery after lateralized spinal cord injury favors primates


Abstract

Experimental and clinical studies suggest that primate species exhibit greater recovery after lateralized compared to symmetrical spinal cord injuries. Although this observation has major implications for designing clinical trials and translational therapies, advantages in recovery of nonhuman primates over other species have not been shown statistically to date, nor have the associated repair mechanisms been identified. We monitored recovery in more than 400 quadriplegic patients and found that functional gains increased with the laterality of spinal cord damage. Electrophysiological analyses suggested that corticospinal tract reorganization contributes to the greater recovery after lateralized compared with symmetrical injuries. To investigate underlying mechanisms, we modeled lateralized injuries in rats and monkeys using a lateral hemisection, and compared anatomical and functional outcomes with patients who suffered similar lesions. Standardized assessments revealed that monkeys and humans showed greater recovery of locomotion and hand function than did rats. Recovery correlated with the formation of corticospinal detour circuits below the injury, which were extensive in monkeys but nearly absent in rats. Our results uncover pronounced interspecies differences in the nature and extent of spinal cord repair mechanisms, likely resulting from fundamental differences in the anatomical and functional characteristics of the motor systems in primates versus rodents. Although rodents remain essential for advancing regenerative therapies, the unique response of the primate corticospinal tract after injury reemphasizes the importance of primate models for designing clinically relevant treatments.

Abstract

Experimental and clinical studies suggest that primate species exhibit greater recovery after lateralized compared to symmetrical spinal cord injuries. Although this observation has major implications for designing clinical trials and translational therapies, advantages in recovery of nonhuman primates over other species have not been shown statistically to date, nor have the associated repair mechanisms been identified. We monitored recovery in more than 400 quadriplegic patients and found that functional gains increased with the laterality of spinal cord damage. Electrophysiological analyses suggested that corticospinal tract reorganization contributes to the greater recovery after lateralized compared with symmetrical injuries. To investigate underlying mechanisms, we modeled lateralized injuries in rats and monkeys using a lateral hemisection, and compared anatomical and functional outcomes with patients who suffered similar lesions. Standardized assessments revealed that monkeys and humans showed greater recovery of locomotion and hand function than did rats. Recovery correlated with the formation of corticospinal detour circuits below the injury, which were extensive in monkeys but nearly absent in rats. Our results uncover pronounced interspecies differences in the nature and extent of spinal cord repair mechanisms, likely resulting from fundamental differences in the anatomical and functional characteristics of the motor systems in primates versus rodents. Although rodents remain essential for advancing regenerative therapies, the unique response of the primate corticospinal tract after injury reemphasizes the importance of primate models for designing clinically relevant treatments.

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics
27 citations in Web of Science®
26 citations in Scopus®
30 citations in Microsoft Academic
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

1 download since deposited on 10 Nov 2016
0 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Balgrist University Hospital, Swiss Spinal Cord Injury Center
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:26 August 2015
Deposited On:10 Nov 2016 09:20
Last Modified:18 Aug 2018 23:18
Publisher:American Association for the Advancement of Science
ISSN:1946-6234
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.aac5811
PubMed ID:26311729
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant ID31003A_146925
  • : Project TitleRestoring supraspinal control of locomotion after severe and chronic spinal cord injury

Download