Latest information on COVID-19
Support teaching, research, and patient care.
Dr. Plant is the director of basic science for the Stanford Partnership for Spinal Cord Injury and Repair, which brings together researchers and clinicians to collaborate on translational research aimed at spinal cord regeneration and repair and improving the quality of life of people paralyzed by spinal cord injury through rehabilitation and restoration of function. As research director, he co-leads the partnership, which includes spinal cord injury units at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System and the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center.Dr. Plant’s current research interests are spinal cord injury, human mesenchymal and induced pluripotent stem cell transplantation, olfactory ensheathing glia, Schwann cell biology and transplantation, peripheral nerve and optic nerve injury.After receiving his PhD from the University of Western Australia, Dr. Plant completed his postdoctoral training at the Miami Project , University of Miami Miller School of Medicine under the mentorship of Professor Mary Bunge. He was also an inaugural member of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation Research Consortium from 1996-2000. He then returned to Australia as director of the Eileen Bond Spinal Research Center and faculty member in the School of Anatomy and Human Biology, University of Western Australia. He joined the Neurosurgery faculty at Stanford in 2010.
The project is examining the new circuits being formed following human corticospinal neuron transplantation. We use small molecule differentiation, transcriptional analysis, transplantation ,spinal cord injury models, functional tests and rehabilitation methods. Other methods include gene therapy, circuit mapping and physiology.
Lorry Loket Stem Cell Building
The laboratory research focus is on the repair of the injured spinal cord using human induced pluripotent stem cells (HiPSCs), mesenchymal stem cells and glial cell transplantation. We utilize animal cervical and thoracic spinal cord injury models (mouse and rat), neuroanatomy, immunocytochemistry, confocal microscopy, viral gene therapy, cell culture and molecular biology techniques in investigating the following areas:<br/><br/>- Stem cell transplantation (adult, embryonic and iPSC) and spinal cord injury<br/>Differentiation of human iPSC to corticospinal lineages for analysis in vitro and in vivo transplantation. We are currently using small molecule differentiation, multi-electrode recordings, wireless and tethered optogenetic stimulations and recordings.<br/>Analysis of corticospinal lineage will use in situ hybridization , qPCR and RNA seq applications . In addition we are using proteomic analysis using mass spec.<br/><br/>-Schwann cell/Biomaterials transplantation and spinal cord injury<br/>The methods being investigated are using novel peptide hydrogels for delivery to the injured spinal cord. Analysis involves the incorporation within the materials, cell survival , hypoxic challenges and possible differentiation and inducement of axonal regeneration after transplantation into the cervical spinal cord. <br/><br/><br/>The laboratory aims to develop new cellular treatments and translational protocols for human treatments, which will one day help improve the quality of life for patients with spinal cord injuries.