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STAT3 promotes corticospinal remodelling and functional recovery after spinal cord injury

EMBO Rep. 2013 Aug 9. doi: 10.1038/embor.2013.117. [Epub ahead of print]

Authors/Editors: Lang C, Bradley PM, Jacobi A, Kerschensteiner M. Bareyre FM.
Publication Date: 2013

 

Abstract

If and how neurons remodel their connections after CNS injury critically influences recovery of function. Here, we investigate the role of the growth-initiating transcription factor STAT3 during remodelling of the injured corticospinal tract (CST). Endogenous STAT3 expression in lesioned cortical projection neurons is transient but can be sustained by viral gene transfer. Sustained activation of STAT3 enhances remodelling of lesioned CST fibres and induces de novo formation of collaterals from unlesioned CST fibres. In a unilateral pyramidotomy paradigm, this recruitment of unlesioned fibres leads to the formation of midline crossing circuits that establish ipsilateral forelimb activation and functional recovery.

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