Background: Recent studies have shown that autologous adult stem cells may be a strategy for treatment of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in humans. The purpose of this study was to explore the effect of autologous bone marrow stem cell mobilization induced by intranasal administration of granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) for TBI in rats.
Methods: Adult Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were assigned to three groups: control group (TBI only), TBI+GM-CSF subcutaneous injection and TBI+GM-CSF intranasally. Neurological scores and testing were done in all rats before TBI, and at 1, 7, 14, 28, 42 days post-TBI. Simultaneously, immunohistochemical labelling and Tunel terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP Nick-End Labelling (TUNEL) assay were performed at the given time.
Results: From two-weeks post-TBI on ward, animals treated with GM-CSF subcutaneous injection or GM-CSF intranasally had lower neurological soft signs (NSS) scores than the control group. Spatial memory (Y-maze) of the treated group were significantly better than those in the control group at two weeks. After sacrifice, compared with the control, rats treated with GM-CSF subcutaneous injection and GM-CSF intranasally, significantly increased expressions of Brdu/GFAP, BDNF, Nestin, Factor VIII, and reduced expression of apoptotis cells around the lesion site. These findings indicate that GM-CSF subcutaneous injection and GM-CSF intranasally in a TBI model achieved similarly positive effect on functional and histologic recovery.
Conclusions: Intranasal delivery of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor provides a potential protective effect in traumatic brain injury.
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