StemCells Inc. has announced the initial patient to be enrolled in the world’s first clinical trial of a human neural stem cell-based therapy for chronic spinal cord injury. Aileen Anderson and Brian Cummings (pictured) of the Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center at UCI collaborated with StemCells Inc. to develop the treatment, in which purified human neural stem cells introduced into the spinal column grow into neural tissue cells that migrate to spinal cord injury sites. The Phase I/II trial, based at the Balgrist University Hospital in Zurich, will test both safety and preliminary efficacy in patients who are three to 12 months post-injury. The first subject is a 23-year-old German man who suffered a spinal cord injury in an auto accident in April.