Regenerative Potential of Injured Spinal Cord in the Light of Epigenetic Regulation and Modulation
Gupta S., Dutta S., Hui SP.
A spinal cord injury is a form of physical harm imposed on the spinal cord that causes disability and, in many cases, leads to permanent mammalian paralysis, which causes a disastrous global issue. Because of its non-regenerative aspect, restoring the spinal cord’s role remains one of the most daunting tasks. By comparison, the remarkable regenerative ability of some regeneration-competent species, such as some Urodeles (Axolotl), Xenopus, and some teleost fishes, enables maximum functional recovery, even after complete spinal cord transection. During the last two decades of intensive research, significant progress has been made in understanding both regenerative cells’ origins and the molecular signaling mechanisms underlying the regeneration and reconstruction of damaged spinal cords in regenerating organisms and mammals, respectively. Epigenetic control has gradually moved into the center stage of this research field, which has been helped by comprehensive work demonstrating that DNA methylation, histone modifications, and microRNAs are important for the regeneration of the spinal cord. In this review, we concentrate primarily on providing a comparison of the epigenetic mechanisms in spinal cord injuries between non-regenerating and regenerating species. In addition, we further discuss the epigenetic mediators that underlie the development of a regeneration-permissive environment following injury in regeneration-competent animals and how such mediators may be implicated in optimizing treatment outcomes for spinal cord injurie in higher-order mammals. Finally, we briefly discuss the role of extracellular vesicles (EVs) in the context of spinal cord injury and their potential as targets for therapeutic intervention.