TitleNeuroplasticity of spinal cord neurons based on piezoelectric stimulation and electrophysiological analysis after stem cell-derived progenitor transplant
NameRoyo Gascon, Maria Nuria (author), Craelius, William (chair), Firestein, Bonnie (internal member), Shreiber, David (internal member), Scheinbeim, Jerry (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
Spinal cord—Wounds and injuries--Treatment,
DescriptionRepair strategies in the context of spinal cord injury cover a broad amount of fields. Different approaches have been considered ranging from the chemical, mechanical, pharmacological, material sciences, electrical and chemical engineering sphere. There is much interest in combinational therapies since many approaches yield promising results yet none is beneficial enough in functional terms. There is also a necessity of properly evaluate the improvement these therapies pose from a functional point of view and do it with sufficient resolution to target and invest in strategies with higher potential. This thesis is born with the interest of contributing to the spinal cord injury field at those two levels. On one side, I have developed an injury model and techniques to test the efficacy of a therapy for spinal cord repair as compared to controls. On the other, I have proposed a combinational therapy in the form of a scaffold that combines biomaterials and electrical fields to stimulate regeneration In the first part of this thesis, I have developed an animal model to test effectiveness of treatment by analyzing the electromyography signal of the intercostal muscles. The respiratory system is a good test bench, usually neglected in regeneration studies. I have used a mix of engineering approaches from signal processing to animal physiology analysis to provide the test with enough resolution to identify improvement. Then, I have proved the efficacy of the model by using a stem cell therapy. In the second part of the thesis, I have tested piezoelectric polymers as a useful platform to deliver electrical fields to neurons. I have shown the resulting increase in neuronal growth upon exposure to alternating electrical fields, in concrete, in neuronal branching. These results encourage the use of biocompatible piezoelectric polymers which are very versatile in nature, as a source for combinational therapies. Future studies will translate this in vitro model into an in vivo treatment which will be assessed with the strategy explained in the first part.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references
Noteby Maria Nuria Royo Gascon
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.