Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) can result from traumatic or non-traumatic insult, condition or disease. SCI is classified by the spinal level of injury (paraplegia or tetraplegia, for example) or severity of injury (from mild, incomplete to severe and/or complete). The primary functional deficits include loss of sensation, motor control, and autonomic regulation. Additional general information about SCI can be found at the NINDS SCI disorder information page.
The NINDS is the lead Institute at NIH supporting extramural SCI research. NINDS funds basic and applied research on normal spinal cord structure and function, mechanisms of injury, and secondary consequences of SCI. NINDS staff also work closely with other NIH Institutes and Centers to support cross-disciplinary SCI research including neuro-prosthesis development and rehabilitation and effects of SCI on organ systems throughout the body.
Estimates of Funding for Various Research, Condition, and Disease Categories
|Research/Disease Areas*||FY 2016
|Spinal Cord Injury||$71||$77||$81||$76|
*Dollars in millions and rounded
Proceedings & Outcomes
SCI 2020: Planning for a Decade for Disruption in Spinal Cord Injury Research Conference
[Video Day 1 & Day 2]
February 12-13, 2019 | Bethesda, MD
FAIR-SCI Ahead Workshop SfN Satellite Symposia Meeting
November 10, 2017 | Washington, DC
Spinal Cord Injury Preclinical Data Workshop: Developing a FAIR Share Community,
October 4-5, 2016 | Rockville, MD
American Spinal Injury Association 2017 Annual Scientific Meeting
April 26-29, 2017 | Albuquerque, NM
Resources and Tools
Join the NINDS SCI Research Listserv to receive regular updates on funding announcements and other opportunities.
News & Events
NINDS strongly encourages researchers who receive funding from the Institute to use these common data elements (CDEs) in their clinical research.
- SCI specific CDEs can be found at: NINDS CDE for Spinal Cord Injury. The NINDS works with the International Spinal Cord Society (ISCoS) to keep the NINDS CDEs aligned with the ISCoS International Basic Data Sets
- A comprehensive list of CDEs from across NIH can be found at the National Library of Medicine (NLM)’s NIH CDE repository.
North American Spinal Cord Injury Consortium (NASCIC)
NASCIC brings together like-minded organizations, individuals, and groups to improve research, care, and policies impacting people living with spinal cord injury, their families, and community. Working collaboratively, the organization is structured to effectively bring about collective change through approved projects.
Spinal Cord Outcomes Partnership Endeavor (SCOPE)
An affiliate of the American Spinal Injury Association, the mission of SCOPE is to enhance the development of clinical trial and clinical practice protocols for therapeutic interventions for SCI. SCOPE sponsors quarterly updates of active interventional SCI clinical trials and peer-reviewed manuscripts focusing on issues of importance for SCI translational and clinical research.
Developing a data sharing community for spinal cord injury research
Results of the 2016 "Spinal Cord Injury Preclinical Data Workshop: Developing a FAIR Share Community" was published as a white paper describing the impact of data sharing opportunities for preclinical SCI researchers.