Electrical Guidance of Human Stem Cells in the Rat Brain

Jun Feng Feng, Jing Liu, Lei Zhang, Ji Yao Jiang, Michael Russell, Bruce G Lyeth, Jan Nolta, Min Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Limited migration of neural stem cells in adult brain is a roadblock for the use of stem cell therapies to treat brain diseases and injuries. Here, we report a strategy that mobilizes and guides migration of stem cells in the brain in vivo. We developed a safe stimulation paradigm to deliver directional currents in the brain. Tracking cells expressing GFP demonstrated electrical mobilization and guidance of migration of human neural stem cells, even against co-existing intrinsic cues in the rostral migration stream. Transplanted cells were observed at 3 weeks and 4 months after stimulation in areas guided by the stimulation currents, and with indications of differentiation. Electrical stimulation thus may provide a potential approach to facilitate brain stem cell therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-189
Number of pages13
JournalStem Cell Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 11 2017


  • brain in vivo
  • directional cell migration
  • electric field
  • electric stimulation
  • electrotaxis
  • galvanotaxis
  • human neural stem cells
  • in vivo migration
  • neural stem cells
  • neuroblasts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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