Background: Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) transplantation had shown to provide a potential source of cells in neurodegenerative disease studies and lead to behavioral recovery in lentivirus transfected or, toxin-induced Huntington’s disease (HD) rodent model. Here, we aimed to observe if transplantation of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticle (SPION)-labeled hESCs could migrate in the neural degenerated area and improve motor dysfunction in an AAV2-Htt171-82Q transfected Huntington rat model.MethodsAll animals were randomly allocated into three groups at first: HD group, sham group, and control group. After six weeks, the animals of the HD group and sham group were again divided into two subgroups depending on animals receiving either ipsilateral or contralateral hESCs transplantation. We performed cylinder test and stepping test every two weeks after AAV2-Htt171-82Q injection and hESCs transplantation. Stem cell tracking was performed once per two weeks using T2 and T2*-weighted images at 4.7 Tesla MRI. We also performed immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence staining to detect the presence of hESCs markers, huntingtin protein aggregations, and iron in the striatum.ResultsAfter hESCs transplantation, the Htt virus-injected rats exhibited significant behavioral improvement in behavioral tests. SPION labeled hESCs showed migration with hypointense signal in MRI. The cells were positive with βIII-tubulin, GABA, and DARPP32.ConclusionCollectively, our results suggested that hESCs transplantation can be a potential treatment for motor dysfunction of Huntington’s disease.