Sandra Acosta

Sandra Acosta, PhD

Post Doctoral Fellow, Neurosurgery and Brain Repair

Academic Email:

Academic Phone:(813) 974-8222


  • PhD, Medical Sciences, University of South Florida, 2011
  • MSMS, Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, USF, 2008
  • BS, Biomedical Science and Chemistry, USF, 2005

Interdisciplinary and Emerging Signature Programs

  • Neuroscience

Research Interests

  • My research area is molecular/behavioral characterization and stem cell therapy of clinically relevant animal models of stroke, TBI and Parkinson’s disease. In our translational research laboratory, our main goal is to identify the mechanism of actions of these neurodegenerative diseases in order to understand and develop more effective cell-based therapeutic interventions in the clinic.

Recent Publications

  • Flowers A, Lee JY, Acosta S, Hudson C, Small B, Sanberg CD, Bickford PC. NT-020 treatment reduces inflammation and augments Nrf-2 and Wnt signaling in aged rats. Journal of neuroinflammation. 12(1) : 174, 2015.
  • Acosta SA, Tajiri N, de la Pena I, Bastawrous M, Sanberg PR, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Alpha-synuclein as a pathological link between chronic traumatic brain injury and Parkinson's disease. Journal of cellular physiology. 230(5) : 1024-32, 2015.
  • dela Peña IC, Yoo A, Tajiri N, Acosta SA, Ji X, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor attenuates delayed tPA-induced hemorrhagic transformation in ischemic stroke rats by enhancing angiogenesis and vasculogenesis. Journal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. 35(2) : 338-46, 2015.
  • De La Peña I, Sanberg PR, Acosta S, Lin SZ, Borlongan CV. G-CSF as an adjunctive therapy with umbilical cord blood cell transplantation for traumatic brain injury. Cell transplantation. 24(3) : 447-57, 2015.
  • Lozano D, Gonzales-Portillo GS, Acosta S, de la Pena I, Tajiri N, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Neuroinflammatory responses to traumatic brain injury: etiology, clinical consequences, and therapeutic opportunities. Neuropsychiatric disease and treatment. 11: 97-106, 2015.
  • Duncan K, Gonzales-Portillo GS, Acosta SA, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV, Tajiri N. Stem cell-paved biobridges facilitate stem transplant and host brain cell interactions for stroke therapy. Brain research. 1623: 160-5, 2015.
  • Acosta SA, Tajiri N, Hoover J, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Intravenous Bone Marrow Stem Cell Grafts Preferentially Migrate to Spleen and Abrogate Chronic Inflammation in Stroke. Stroke; a journal of cerebral circulation. 46(9) : 2616-27, 2015.
  • Cerecedo-López CD, Kim-Lee JH, Hernandez D, Acosta SA, Borlongan CV. Insulin-associated neuroinflammatory pathways as therapeutic targets for traumatic brain injury. Medical hypotheses. 82(2) : 171-4, 2014.
  • Pabon M, Tamboli C, Tamboli S, Acosta S, De La Pena I, Sanberg PR, Tajiri N, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. ESTROGEN REPLACEMENT THERAPY FOR STROKE. Cell medicine. 6(3) : 111-122, 2014.
  • Dela Peña I, Sanberg PR, Acosta S, Tajiri N, Lin SZ, Borlongan CV. Stem cells and G-CSF for treating neuroinflammation in traumatic brain injury: aging as a comorbidity factor. Journal of neurosurgical sciences. 58(3) : 145-9, 2014.
  • de la Pena I, Pabon M, Acosta S, Sanberg PR, Tajiri N, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Oligodendrocytes engineered with migratory proteins as effective graft source for cell transplantation in multiple sclerosis. Cell medicine. 6(3) : 123-127, 2014.
  • Tajiri N, Duncan K, Antoine A, Pabon M, Acosta SA, de la Pena I, Hernadez-Ontiveros DG, Shinozuka K, Ishikawa H, Kaneko Y, Yankee E, McGrogan M, Case C, Borlongan CV. Stem cell-paved biobridge facilitates neural repair in traumatic brain injury. Frontiers in systems neuroscience. 8: 116, 2014.
  • de la Peña I, Sanberg PR, Acosta S, Lin SZ, Borlongan CV. Umbilical cord blood cell and granulocyte-colony stimulating factor: combination therapy for traumatic brain injury. Regenerative medicine. 9(4) : 409-12, 2014.
  • Tajiri N, Acosta S, Portillo-Gonzales GS, Aguirre D, Reyes S, Lozano D, Pabon M, Dela Peña I, Ji X, Yasuhara T, Date I, Solomita MA, Antonucci I, Stuppia L, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Therapeutic outcomes of transplantation of amniotic fluid-derived stem cells in experimental ischemic stroke. Frontiers in cellular neuroscience. 8: 227, 2014.
  • Tajiri N, Duncan K, Borlongan MC, Pabon M, Acosta S, de la Pena I, Hernadez-Ontiveros D, Lozano D, Aguirre D, Reyes S, Sanberg PR, Eve DJ, Borlongan CV, Kaneko Y. Adult stem cell transplantation: is gender a factor in stemness? International journal of molecular sciences. 15(9) : 15225-43, 2014.
  • Tajiri N, Acosta SA, Shahaduzzaman M, Ishikawa H, Shinozuka K, Pabon M, Hernandez-Ontiveros D, Kim DW, Metcalf C, Staples M, Dailey T, Vasconcellos J, Franyuti G, Gould L, Patel N, Cooper D, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV, Bickford PC. Intravenous transplants of human adipose-derived stem cell protect the brain from traumatic brain injury-induced neurodegeneration and motor and cognitive impairments: cell graft biodistribution and soluble factors in young and aged rats. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 34(1) : 313-26, 2014.
  • Acosta SA, Diamond DM, Wolfe S, Tajiri N, Shinozuka K, Ishikawa H, Hernandez DG, Sanberg PR, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Influence of post-traumatic stress disorder on neuroinflammation and cell proliferation in a rat model of traumatic brain injury. PloS one. 8(12) : e81585, 2013.
  • Shahaduzzaman M, Acosta S, Bickford PC, Borlongan CV. α-Synuclein is a pathological link and therapeutic target for Parkinson's disease and traumatic brain injury. Medical hypotheses. 81(4) : 675-80, 2013.
  • Staples M, Acosta S, Tajiri N, Pabon M, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Delta opioid receptor and its peptide: a receptor-ligand neuroprotection. International journal of molecular sciences. 14(9) : 17410-9, 2013.
  • Acosta SA, Franzese N, Staples M, Weinbren NL, Babilonia M, Patel J, Merchant N, Simancas AJ, Slakter A, Caputo M, Patel M, Franyuti G, Franzblau MH, Suarez L, Gonzales-Portillo C, Diamandis T, Shinozuka K, Tajiri N, Sanberg PR, Kaneko Y, Miller LW, Borlongan CV. Human Umbilical Cord Blood for Transplantation Therapy in Myocardial Infarction. Journal of stem cell research & therapy. (Suppl 4) , 2013.
  • Dailey T, Mosley Y, Pabon M, Acosta S, Tajiri N, van Loveren H, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Advancing critical care medicine with stem cell therapy and hypothermia for cerebral palsy. Neuroreport. 24(18) : 1067-71, 2013.
  • Hernandez-Ontiveros DG, Tajiri N, Acosta S, Giunta B, Tan J, Borlongan CV. Microglia activation as a biomarker for traumatic brain injury. Frontiers in neurology. 4: 30, 2013.
  • Diamandis T, Gonzales-Portillo C, Gonzales-Portillo GS, Staples M, Borlongan MC, Hernandez D, Acosta S, Borlongan CV. Diabetes insipidus contributes to traumatic brain injury pathology via CD36 neuroinflammation. Medical hypotheses. 81(5) : 936-9, 2013.
  • Dailey T, Metcalf C, Mosley YI, Sullivan R, Shinozuka K, Tajiri N, Pabon M, Acosta S, Kaneko Y, van Loveren H, Borlongan CV. An Update on Translating Stem Cell Therapy for Stroke from Bench to Bedside. Journal of clinical medicine. 2(4) : 220-241, 2013.
  • Acosta SA, Tajiri N, Shinozuka K, Ishikawa H, Grimmig B, Diamond DM, Diamond D, Sanberg PR, Bickford PC, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Long-term upregulation of inflammation and suppression of cell proliferation in the brain of adult rats exposed to traumatic brain injury using the controlled cortical impact model. PloS one. 8(1) : e53376, 2013.
  • Ishikawa H, Caputo M, Franzese N, Weinbren NL, Slakter A, Patel M, Stahl CE, Jacotte MA, Acosta S, Franyuti G, Shinozuka K, Tajiri N, van Loveren H, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Stroke in the eye of the beholder. Medical hypotheses. 80(4) : 411-5, 2013.
  • Shinozuka K, Dailey T, Tajiri N, Ishikawa H, Kim DW, Pabon M, Acosta S, Kaneko Y, Borlongan CV. Stem Cells for Neurovascular Repair in Stroke. Journal of stem cell research & therapy. 4(4) : 12912, 2013.