Up to 7 Million patients worldwide live with the debilitating consequences of spinal cord injury. Inferior neurological and functional recovery profiles, may be associated with the maladaptive systemic immune response emerging early after spinal cord injury. This maladaptive response is characterized by two immunological conditions: developing post-traumatic autoimmunity against central nervous system-neo-antigens and the spinal cord injury-induced immune deficiency syndrome.

The SILENCE project goal is to decipher distinct signatures of autoimmunity in experimental and clinical studies linking those to long-term neurological and functional recovery.

Specifically, the project pursues the following four objectives: deciphering time dependent spreading of humoral autoimmunity profiles, evaluating the functionally relevant auto-antigens in bed to bench-side approach, linking autoimmunity response to clinical outcomes, and validating the findings across pathologies.

Stratification of spinal cord injury patients by the occurrence and penetrance of the maladaptive systemic immune response will provide the basis for the definition of context and time dependent immunological subgroups required for individualized effective immune-modulatory treatment


SILENCE Project investigate the hypothesis whether inferior and normal rehabilitation responders identified by recursive partitioning display distinct patterns of autoimmunity.

Click here for more background information.


SILENCE project uses well-characterized spinal cord injury specimen banks from international prospective multicenter trials, tissue repositories, and experimental models of autoimmune disease.

Click here to know more about the research design.


SILENCE is an ambitious interdisciplinary research project conducted by a translational consortium of five international institutions, comprising expertise in immunology, proteomics, neuropathology, neurology, rehabilitative medicine, epidemiology, and paraplegiology.

Click here to meet the research partners.