[en] Highly enriched cultures of Schwann cells were obtained from adult rat dorsal root ganglia and implanted (5 x 10(5) -9 x 10(5) cells) in the spinal cord of syngenic adult rats at the site of an acute compression lesion produced by a subdural inflatable microballoon. These autografts survived and invaded the host tissue, reducing central cavitation and astrocytic gliosis. They dramatically promoted ingrowth of axons, the majority of which appeared to come from the dorsal roots as judged by their neuropeptide content. Invasion of the transplants by descending, e.g. aminergic fibers, was negligible at survival times of up to 4 months. Nonetheless, autologous Schwann cells, which are readily available in the host, represent a promising material for grafts into the injured spinal cord.