Meta-analysis of stem cell transplantation for reflex hypersensitivity after spinal cord injury

Xuemei Chen, Bohan Xue, Yuping Li, Chunhua Song, Peijun Jia, Xiuhua Ren, Weidong Zang, Jian Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Stem cells have been used in novel therapeutic strategies for spinal cord injury (SCI), but the effect of stem cell transplantation on neuropathic pain after SCI is unclear. The current meta-analysis evaluates the effects of stem cell transplantation on neuropathic pain after SCI. We first conducted online searches of PubMed, Web of Science, China Academic Journals Full-text Database, and Wanfang Data for randomized controlled trials that compared stem cell transplantation and vehicle treatments in rodent models of neuropathic pain after SCI. Quality assessment was performed using Cochrane Reviewer's Handbook 5.1.0, and meta-analysis was conducted with RevMan 5.3. Then, we developed a rat model of SCI and transplanted bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells to verify meta-analysis results. Twelve randomized, controlled trials (n = 354 total animals) were included in our meta-analysis and divided by subgroups, including species, timing of behavioral measurements, and transplantation time after SCI. Subgroup analysis of these 12 studies indicated that stem cell-treated animals had a higher mechanical reflex threshold than vehicle groups, with a significant difference in both rats and mice. The thermal withdrawal latency showed the same results in mouse subgroups, but not in rat subgroups. In addition, mesenchymal stem cell transplantation was an effective treatment for mechanical, but not thermal reflex hypersensitivity relief in rats. Transplantation showed a positive effect when carried out at 3 or 7 days post-SCI. Stem cell transplantation alleviates mechanical reflex hypersensitivity in rats and mice and thermal reflex hypersensitivity in mice after SCI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-75
Number of pages10
StatePublished - Nov 5 2017


  • meta-analysis
  • neuropathic pain
  • spinal cord injury
  • stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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