We discuss the mechanisms of action underlying the beneficial effects of treating ischemic stroke in the rodent with exogenously administered cells. The essential hypothesis proposed is that the administered cells enhance recovery of neurological function by stimulating the production of restorative factors by parenchymal cells. These activated endogenous brain cells evoke white matter remodeling in the brain and the spinal cord and generate microenvironments within the injured brain that amplify brain plasticity and lead to improvement in neurological function poststroke.
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