The Journal of Neurosurgery (JNS) Publishing Group is proud to announce publication of the NACTN/AOSNA Focus Issue on Spinal Cord Injury, a supplement to the September issue of the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, which is sponsored by AOSpine North America available in print and online. The online version of the supplement is available free to the public. The focus of this special supplement, which was spearheaded by Dr. Michael Fehlings, Professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Toronto and Medical Director of the Krembil Neuroscience Centre at the Toronto Western Hospital, is the development of cutting-edge translational research in the treatment of spinal cord injury (SCI), an often devastating injury that affects 2.5 million people worldwide, many of whom are first faced with it in early adulthood. The topic is addressed in a variety of forms in 17 articles and several editorials.
Many of the studies were conducted by members of the North American Clinical Trials Network (NACTN) for the Treatment of SCI, a consortium of 10 neurosurgery departments supplemented by a data management center and a pharmacological center. The principal investigator for the NACTN is Dr. Robert Grossman, Chairman, Department of Neurosurgery, The Methodist Hospital, Houston. Funded by the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and the US Department of Defense, the NACTN was established to move molecular- and cell-based discoveries in the protection and regeneration of neuronal pathways from the laboratory to the clinical setting.
The supplement brings together papers focused on a variety of subjects related to identifying and evaluating different types of SCI, as well as developing therapeutic strategies for dealing with the disabilities that attend the injury. Graded assessments used to define the scope and extent of injury are presented and reviewed. Clinical and imaging predictors of neurological and functional outcomes, complications, and survival after SCI are identified and assessed. Original clinical studies and review articles on current and potential drug-based therapies are presented. Issues surrounding quality of life in patients with SCI are addressed. The cost-effectiveness of surgery in injured patients is examined and validated. Finally, the goals and progress of the NACTN in the transition of therapeutic strategies from preclinical to clinical settings are described.
Some interesting papers include the following: