Administration of stem cells to the central nervous system remains
to be a challenge and that is particularly evident in case
of diseases with disseminated pathology such as ALS. Infusion
into cerebrospinal fluid spaces is promising but cells were
shown to sediment, cell survival was low and engraftment was
disappointing. To address this problem we propose to embed
the cells in injectable, MRI-visible alginate-based biomaterial to
facilitate precise placement of the injected composite as guided
by interventional MRI. Manganese as divalent ion covalently
binds with alginate and we hypothesized that such property and
supplementation with Mn can be exploited for imaging [1, 2].
Here we report on application of Mn contrast for interventional
MRI, of intrathecal injection of alginate hydrogels in pigs.