A recent clinical trial proves that autologous olfactory mucosal cell (OMC) transplantation improves locomotion in dogs with naturally occurring spinal injuries comparable to human lesions. However, not all dogs respond to the treatment, likely due to the transplantation procedures involving injections of cell suspensions that are associated with cell death, uneven cell distribution, and cell washout. Encapsulating cells in protective hydrogel matrices offers a tissue engineering solution to safely achieve 3D growth of viable transplant cells for implantation into injury sites, to improve regenerative outcomes. It is shown for the first time that canine OMCs (cOMCs) can be propagated with high viability in 3D collagen matrices. Further, a method to incorporate cOMCs pre-labeled with clinical-grade iron oxide nanoparticles into the constructs is described. Intraconstruct labeled cells are visualized using magnetic resonance imaging, offering substantial promise for in vivo tracking of cOMCs delivered in protective matrices.
- canine olfactory mucosal cell
- cell transplantation
- magnetic nanoparticle
- spinal injury