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1.  Hypoxic Preconditioning Results in Increased Motility and Improved Therapeutic Potential of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells 
Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio)  2008;26(8):2173-2182.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are adult multipotent cells found in bone marrow, adipose tissue, and other adult tissues. MSC have been shown to improve regeneration of injured tissues in vivo, but the mechanisms remain unclear. Typically, MSC are cultured under ambient, or normoxic, conditions (21% oxygen). However, the physiological niches for MSC in the bone marrow and other sites have much lower oxygen tension. When used as a therapeutic tool to repair tissue injuries, MSC cultured in standard conditions must adapt from 21% oxygen in culture to less than 1% oxygen in the ischemic tissue. We therefore examined the effects of preculturing human bone marrow-derived MSC in hypoxic conditions (1%–3% oxygen) to elucidate the best conditions that enhance their tissue regenerative potential. We demonstrated that MSC cultured in hypoxia activate the Akt signaling pathway while maintaining their viability and cell cycle rates. We also showed that MSC cultured in hypoxia induced expression of cMet, the major receptor for hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), and enhanced cMet signaling. MSC cultured in hypoxic conditions increased their migration rates. Since migration and HGF responsiveness are thought to be key mediators of MSC recruitment and/or activation in vivo, we next examined the tissue regenerative potential of MSC cultured under hypoxic conditions, using a murine hind limb ischemia model. We showed that local expression of HGF is increased in ischemic muscle in this model. Intra-arterial injection of MSC cultured in either normoxic or hypoxic conditions 24 hours after surgical induction of hind limb ischemia enhanced revascularization compared with saline controls. However, restoration of blood flow was observed significantly earlier in mice that had been injected with hypoxic preconditioned MSC. Collectively, these data suggest that preculturing MSC under hypoxic conditions prior to transplantation improves their tissue regenerative potential.
PMCID: PMC3017477  PMID: 18511601
Immune-deficient mice; Human stem cells; Mesenchymal stem cells; Hypoxia; Transplantation; Tissue repair
2.  Equine mesenchymal stem cells from bone marrow, adipose tissue and umbilical cord: immunophenotypic characterization and differentiation potential 
Studies with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are increasing due to their immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory and tissue regenerative properties. However, there is still no agreement about the best source of equine MSCs for a bank for allogeneic therapy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the cell culture and immunophenotypic characteristics and differentiation potential of equine MSCs from bone marrow (BM-MSCs), adipose tissue (AT-MSCs) and umbilical cord (UC-MSCs) under identical in vitro conditions, to compare these sources for research or an allogeneic therapy cell bank.
The BM-MSCs, AT-MSCs and UC-MSCs were cultured and evaluated in vitro for their osteogenic, adipogenic and chondrogenic differentiation potential. Additionally, MSCs were assessed for CD105, CD44, CD34, CD90 and MHC-II markers by flow cytometry, and MHC-II was also assessed by immunocytochemistry. To interpret the flow cytometry results, statistical analysis was performed using ANOVA.
The harvesting and culturing procedures of BM-MSCs, AT-MSCs and UC-MSCs were feasible, with an average cell growth until the third passage of 25 days for BM-MSCs, 15 days for AT-MSCs and 26 days for UC-MSCs. MSCs from all sources were able to differentiate into osteogenic (after 10 days for BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs and 15 days for UC-MSCs), adipogenic (after 8 days for BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs and 15 days for UC-MSCs) and chondrogenic (after 21 days for BM-MSCs, AT-MSCs and UC-MSCs) lineages. MSCs showed high expression of CD105, CD44 and CD90 and low or negative expression of CD34 and MHC-II. The MHC-II was not detected by immunocytochemistry techniques in any of the MSCs studied.
The BM, AT and UC are feasible sources for harvesting equine MSCs, and their immunophenotypic and multipotency characteristics attained minimal criteria for defining MSCs. Due to the low expression of MHC-II by MSCs, all of the sources could be used in clinical trials involving allogeneic therapy in horses. However, the BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs showed fastest ‘‘in vitro’’ differentiation and AT-MSCs showed highest cell growth until third passage. These findings suggest that BM and AT may be preferable for cell banking purposes.
PMCID: PMC4055040  PMID: 24559797
3.  Comparative Analysis of the Immunomodulatory Properties of Equine Adult-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells1 
Cell medicine  2012;4(1):1-11.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) derived from bone marrow (BM), adipose tissue (AT), umbilical cord blood (CB), and umbilical cord tissue (CT) are increasingly being used to treat equine inflammatory and degenerative lesions. MSCs modulate the immune system in part through mediator secretion. Animal species and MSC tissue of origin are both important determinants of MSC function. In spite of widespread clinical use, how equine MSCs function to heal tissues is fully unknown. In this study, MSCs derived from BM, AT, CB, and CT were compared for their ability to inhibit lymphocyte proliferation and secrete mediators in response to activation. Five MSC lines from each tissue were isolated. Lymphocyte proliferation was assessed in a mixed leukocyte reaction, and mediator secretion was determined by ELISA. Regardless of tissue of origin, quiescent MSCs did not alter lymphocyte proliferation or secrete mediators, except for transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β1). When stimulated, MSCs of all tissue types decreased lymphocyte proliferation, increased prostaglandin (PGE2) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) secretion, and decreased production of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interferon-γ (IFN-γ). BM-MSCs and CB-MSCs also produced nitric oxide (NO), while AT-MSCs and CT-MSCs did not. Equine MSCs did not produce indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO). These data suggest that activated equine MSCs derived from BM, AT, CT, and CB secrete high concentration of mediators and are similar to MSCs from rodents and humans in their immunomodulatory profiles. These findings have implication for the treatment of inflammatory lesions dominated by activated lymphocytes and TNF-α and IFN-γ in vivo.
PMCID: PMC3495591  PMID: 23152950
Equine; Mesenchymal stem cells; Immunomodulation; Lymphocytes; Bone marrow; Umbilical cord blood; Adipose and umbilical cord tissue
4.  MSC Frequency Correlates with Blood Vessel Density in Equine Adipose Tissue 
Tissue Engineering. Part A  2008;15(2):221-229.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent cells that have the capacity to develop into different mature mesenchymal cell types. They were originally isolated from bone marrow, but MSC-like cells have also been isolated from other tissues. The common feature of all of these tissues is that they all house blood vessels. It is, thus, possible that MSCs are associated with perivascular locations. The objective of this work was to test the hypothesis that MSCs are associated with blood vessels by verifying if MSC frequency positively correlates with blood vessel density. To this end, samples from highly and poorly vascularized adipose tissue sites of two equine donors were collected and processed for histology and cell isolation. MSC frequency in these samples was estimated by means of CFU-F assays, which were performed under MSC conditions. Culture-adherent cells from equine adipose tissue and bone marrow were culture expanded, tested for differentiation into mesenchymal cell types in vitro, and implanted in vivo in porous ceramic vehicles to assess their osteogenic capacity, using human MSCs and brain pericytes as controls. The differentiation assays showed a difference between adipose tissue–derived cells as compared to equine bone marrow MSCs. While differences in CFU-F frequencies between both donors were evident, the CFU-F numbers correlated directly with blood vessel densities (r2 = 0.86). We consider these preliminary data as further evidence linking MSCs to blood vessels.
PMCID: PMC2810211  PMID: 18847356
5.  Constitutive stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factor alpha selectively promotes the self-renewal of mesenchymal progenitors and maintains mesenchymal stromal cells in an undifferentiated state 
With the increasing use of culture-expanded mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) for cell therapies, factors that regulate the cellular characteristics of MSCs have been of major interest. Oxygen concentration has been shown to influence the functions of MSCs, as well as other normal and malignant stem cells. However, the underlying mechanisms of hypoxic responses and the precise role of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (Hif-1α), the master regulatory protein of hypoxia, in MSCs remain unclear, due to the limited span of Hif-1α stabilization and the complex network of hypoxic responses. In this study, to further define the significance of Hif-1α in MSC function during their self-renewal and terminal differentiation, we established adult bone marrow (BM)-derived MSCs that are able to sustain high level expression of ubiquitin-resistant Hif-1α during such long-term biological processes. Using this model, we show that the stabilization of Hif-1α proteins exerts a selective influence on colony-forming mesenchymal progenitors promoting their self-renewal and proliferation, without affecting the proliferation of the MSC mass population. Moreover, Hif-1α stabilization in MSCs led to the induction of pluripotent genes (oct-4 and klf-4) and the inhibition of their terminal differentiation into osteogenic and adipogenic lineages. These results provide insights into the previously unrecognized roles of Hif-1α proteins in maintaining the primitive state of primary MSCs and on the cellular heterogeneities in hypoxic responses among MSC populations.
PMCID: PMC3789268  PMID: 24071737
Hif-1α; hypoxia; MSC; self-renewal
6.  Effects of Severe Hypoxia on Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Differentiation Potential 
Stem Cells International  2013;2013:232896.
Background. The interests in mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and their application in cell therapy have resulted in a better understanding of the basic biology of these cells. Recently hypoxia has been indicated as crucial for complete chondrogenesis. We aimed at analyzing bone marrow MSCs (BM-MSCs) differentiation capacity under normoxic and severe hypoxic culture conditions. Methods. MSCs were characterized by flow cytometry and differentiated towards adipocytes, osteoblasts, and chondrocytes under normoxic or severe hypoxic conditions. The differentiations were confirmed comparing each treated point with a control point made of cells grown in DMEM and fetal bovine serum (FBS). Results. BM-MSCs from the donors displayed only few phenotypical differences in surface antigens expressions. Analyzing marker genes expression levels of the treated cells compared to their control point for each lineage showed a good differentiation in normoxic conditions and the absence of this differentiation capacity in severe hypoxic cultures. Conclusions. In our experimental conditions, severe hypoxia affects the in vitro differentiation potential of BM-MSCs. Adipogenic, osteogenic, and chondrogenic differentiations are absent in severe hypoxic conditions. Our work underlines that severe hypoxia slows cell differentiation by means of molecular mechanisms since a decrease in the expression of adipocyte-, osteoblast-, and chondrocyte-specific genes was observed.
PMCID: PMC3777136  PMID: 24082888
7.  Conditioned Medium from Hypoxic Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Enhances Wound Healing in Mice 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e96161.
Growing evidence indicates that bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) enhance wound repair via paracrine. Because the extent of environmental oxygenation affects the innate characteristics of BM-MSCs, including their stemness and migration capacity, the current study set out to elucidate and compare the impact of normoxic and hypoxic cell-culture conditions on the expression and secretion of BM-MSC-derived paracrine molecules (e.g., cytokines, growth factors and chemokines) that hypothetically contribute to cutaneous wound healing in vivo. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) analyses of normoxic and hypoxic BM-MSCs and their conditioned medium fractions showed that the stem cells expressed and secreted significantly higher amounts of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF),vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) interleukin 6 (IL-6) and interleukin 8 (IL-8) under hypoxic conditions. Moreover, hypoxic BM-MSC-derived conditioned medium (hypoCM) vs. normoxic BM-MSC-derived conditioned medium (norCM) or vehicle control medium significantly enhanced the proliferation of keratinocytes, fibroblasts and endothelial cells, the migration of keratinocytes, fibroblasts, endothelial cells and monocytes, and the formation of tubular structures by endothelial cells cultured on Matrigel matrix. Consistent with these in vitro results, skin wound contraction was significantly accelerated in Balb/c nude mice treated with topical hypoCM relative to norCM or the vehicle control. Notably increased in vivo cell proliferation, neovascularization as well as recruitment of inflammatory macrophages and evidently decreased collagen I, and collagen III were also found in the hypoCM-treated group. These findings suggest that BM-MSCs promote murine skin wound healing via hypoxia-enhanced paracrine.
PMCID: PMC4004560  PMID: 24781370
8.  Comprehensive Characterization of Mesenchymal Stem Cells from Human Placenta and Fetal Membrane and Their Response to Osteoactivin Stimulation 
Stem Cells International  2012;2012:658356.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are the most promising seed cells for cell therapy and can be isolated from various sources of human adult tissues such as bone marrow (BM-MSC) and adipose tissue. However, cells from these tissues must be obtained through invasive procedures. We, therefore, characterized MSCs isolated from fresh placenta (Pl-MSC) and fetal membrane (Mb-MSC) through morphological and fluorescent-activated cell sorting (FACS). MSC frequency is higher in membrane than placenta (2.14%  ± 0.65 versus 15.67%  ± 0.29%). Pl/Mb-MSCs in vitro expansion potential was significantly higher than BM-MSCs. We demonstrated that one of the MSC-specific marker is sufficient for MSC isolation and that culture in specific media is the optimal way for selecting very homogenous MSC population. These MSCs could be differentiated into mesodermal cells expressing cell markers and cytologic staining consistent with mature osteoblasts and adipocytes. Transcriptomic analysis and cytokine arrays demonstrated broad similarity between placenta- and membrane-derived MSCs and only discrete differences with BM-MSCs with enrichment of networks involved in bone differentiation. Pl/Mb-MSCs displayed higher osteogenic differentiation potential than BM-MSC when their response to osteoactivin was evaluated. Fetal-tissue-derived mesenchymal cells may, therefore, be considered as a major source of MSCs to reach clinical scale banking in particular for bone regeneration.
PMCID: PMC3373208  PMID: 22701494
9.  Low physiologic oxygen tensions reduce proliferation and differentiation of human multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells 
BMC Cell Biology  2010;11:11.
Human multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) can be isolated from various tissues including bone marrow. Here, MSC participate as bone lining cells in the formation of the hematopoietic stem cell niche. In this compartment, the oxygen tension is low and oxygen partial pressure is estimated to range from 1% to 7%. We analyzed the effect of low oxygen tensions on human MSC cultured with platelet-lysate supplemented media and assessed proliferation, morphology, chromosomal stability, immunophenotype and plasticity.
After transferring MSC from atmospheric oxygen levels of 21% to 1%, HIF-1α expression was induced, indicating efficient oxygen reduction. Simultaneously, MSC exhibited a significantly different morphology with shorter extensions and broader cell bodies. MSC did not proliferate as rapidly as under 21% oxygen and accumulated in G1 phase. The immunophenotype, however, was unaffected. Hypoxic stress as well as free oxygen radicals may affect chromosomal stability. However, no chromosomal abnormalities in human MSC under either culture condition were detected using high-resolution matrix-based comparative genomic hybridization. Reduced oxygen tension severely impaired adipogenic and osteogenic differentiation of human MSC. Elevation of oxygen from 1% to 3% restored osteogenic differentiation.
Physiologic oxygen tension during in vitro culture of human MSC slows down cell cycle progression and differentiation. Under physiological conditions this may keep a proportion of MSC in a resting state. Further studies are needed to analyze these aspects of MSC in tissue regeneration.
PMCID: PMC2827377  PMID: 20109207
10.  Comparison of Epithelial Differentiation and Immune Regulatory Properties of Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Derived from Human Lung and Bone Marrow 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(5):e35639.
Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) reside in many organs including lung, as shown by their isolation from fetal lung tissues, bronchial stromal compartment, bronchial-alveolar lavage and transplanted lung tissues. It is still controversial whether lung MSCs can undergo mesenchymal-to-epithelial-transition (MET) and possess immune regulatory properties. To this aim, we isolated, expanded and characterized MSCs from normal adult human lung (lung-hMSCs) and compared with human bone marrow-derived MSCs (BM-hMSCs). Our results show that lung-MSCs reside at the perivascular level and do not significantly differ from BM-hMSCs in terms of immunophenotype, stemness gene profile, mesodermal differentiation potential and modulation of T, B and NK cells. However, lung-hMSCs express higher basal level of the stemness-related marker nestin and show, following in vitro treatment with retinoic acid, higher epithelial cell polarization, which is anyway partial when compared to a control epithelial bronchial cell line. Although these results question the real capability of acquiring epithelial functions by MSCs and the feasibility of MSC-based therapeutic approaches to regenerate damaged lung tissues, the characterization of this lung-hMSC population may be useful to study the involvement of stromal cell compartment in lung diseases in which MET plays a role, such as in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
PMCID: PMC3342330  PMID: 22567106
11.  Adipose Tissue-Derived Multipotent Stromal Cells Have a Higher Immunomodulatory Capacity Than Their Bone Marrow-Derived Counterparts 
This study systematically compared the immunomodulatory capacities of adipose tissue-derived multipotent stromal cells (AT-MSCs) and bone marrow-derived multipotent stromal cells (BM-MSCs) derived from age-matched donors. It was found that BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs show functionally similar immunomodulatory effects, but with a different dose-response curve, in favor of AT-MSCs. AT-MSCs can be considered as a good alternative to BM-MSCs for immunomodulatory therapy.
Adipose tissue-derived multipotent stromal cells (AT-MSCs) are studied as an alternative to bone marrow-derived multipotent stromal cells (BM-MSCs) for immunomodulatory treatment. In this study, we systematically compared the immunomodulatory capacities of BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs derived from age-matched donors. We found that BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs share a similar immunophenotype and capacity for in vitro multilineage differentiation. BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs showed comparable immunomodulatory effects as they were both able to suppress proliferation of stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells and to inhibit differentiation of monocyte-derived immature dendritic cells. However, at equal cell numbers, the AT-MSCs showed more potent immunomodulatory effects in both assays as compared with BM-MSCs. Moreover, AT-MSCs showed a higher level of secretion of cytokines that have been implicated in the immunomodulatory modes of action of multipotent stromal cells, such as interleukin-6 and transforming growth factor-β1. This is correlated with higher metabolic activity of AT-MSCs compared with BM-MSCs. We conclude that the immunomodulatory capacities of BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs are similar, but that differences in cytokine secretion cause AT-MSCs to have more potent immunomodulatory effects than BM-MSCs. Therefore, lower numbers of AT-MSCs evoke the same level of immunomodulation. These data indicate that AT-MSCs can be considered as a good alternative to BM-MSCs for immunomodulatory therapy.
PMCID: PMC3673757  PMID: 23694810
Adult human bone marrow; Cellular therapy; Bone marrow; Bone marrow stromal cells; Immunosuppression; Marrow stromal stem cells; Mesenchymal stem cells
12.  Hypoxic Preconditioning with Cobalt of Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Improves Cell Migration and Enhances Therapy for Treatment of Ischemic Acute Kidney Injury 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(5):e62703.
Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) administration is known to enhance the recovery of the kidney following injury. Here we tested the potential of hypoxic-preconditioned-MSC transplantation to enhance the efficacy of cell therapy on acute kidney injury (AKI) by improving MSC migration to the injured kidney. Cobalt was used as hypoxia mimetic preconditioning (HMP). MSC were subjected to HMP through 24 h culture in 200 µmol/L cobalt. Compared to normoxia cultured MSC (NP-MSC), HMP significantly increased the expression of HIF-1α and CXCR4 in MSC and enhanced the migration of MSC in vitro. This effect was lost when MSC were treated with siRNA targeting HIF-1α or CXCR4 antagonist. SPIO labeled MSC were administered to rats with I/R injury followed immediately by magnetic resonance imaging. Imaging clearly showed that HMP-MSC exhibited greater migration and a longer retention time in the ischemic kidney than NP-MSC. Histological evaluation showed more HMP-MSC in the glomerular capillaries of ischemic kidneys than in the kidneys receiving NP-MSC. Occasional tubules showed iron labeling in the HMP group, while no tubules had iron labeling in NP group, indicating the possibility of tubular transdifferentiation after HMP. These results were also confirmed by fluorescence microscopy study using CM-DiI labeling. The increased recruitment of HMP-MSC was associated with reduced kidney injury and enhanced functional recovery. This effect was also related to the increased paracrine action by HMP-MSC. Thus we suggest that by enhancing MSC migration and prolonging kidney retention, hypoxic preconditioning of MSC may be a useful approach for developing AKI cell therapy.
PMCID: PMC3650042  PMID: 23671625
13.  Comparison of bone marrow and adipose tissue-derived canine mesenchymal stem cells 
Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) and adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (AT-MSCs) are potential cellular sources of therapeutic stem cells. MSCs are a multipotent population of cells capable of differentiating into a number of mesodermal lineages. Treatment using MSCs appears to be a helpful approach for structural restoration in regenerative medicine. Correct identification of these cells is necessary, but there is inadequate information on the MSC profile of cell surface markers and mRNA expression in dogs. In this study, we performed molecular characterization of canine BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs using immunological and mRNA expression analysis.
Samples were confirmed to be multipotent based on their osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation. And these cells were checked as stem cell, hematopoietic and embryonic stem cell (ESC) markers by flow cytometry. BM- and AT-MSCs showed high expression of CD29 and CD44, moderate expression of CD90, and were negative for CD34, CD45, SSEA-3, SSEA-4, TRA-1-60, and TRA-1-81. SSEA-1 was expressed at very low levels in AT-MSCs. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) revealed expression of Oct3/4, Sox2, and Nanog in BM- and AT-MSCs. There was no significant difference in expression of Oct3/4 and Sox2 between BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs. However, Nanog expression was 2.5-fold higher in AT-MSCs than in BM-MSCs. Using immunocytochemical analysis, Oct3/4 and Sox2 proteins were observed in BM- and AT-MSCs.
Our results provide fundamental information to enable for more reproducible and reliable quality control in the identification of canine BM-MSCs and AT-MSCs by protein and mRNA expression analysis.
PMCID: PMC3442961  PMID: 22937862
Canine; Mesenchymal stem cell; Cell surface markers; Embryonic stem cell markers
14.  Long-term In vitro Expansion Alters the Biology of Adult Mesenchymal Stem Cells 
Cancer research  2008;68(11):4229-4238.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) derived from bone marrow stem cells (BMSC) and adipose tissue stem cells (ASC) of humans and rhesus macaques were evaluated for their cell cycle properties during protracted culture in vitro. Human ASCs (hASC) and rhesus BMSCs (rBMSC) underwent significantly more total population doublings than human BMSCs (hBMSC) and rhesus ASCs (rASC). The cell cycle profile of all MSCs was altered as cultures aged. hMSCs underwent an increase in the frequency of cells in the S phase at P20 and P30. However, rhesus MSCs from both sources developed a distinct polyploid population of cells at P20, which progressed to aneuploidy by P30. Karyotype analysis of MSCs revealed the development of tetraploid or aneuploid karyotypes in the rhesus cells at P20 or P30. Analysis of the transcriptome of the MSCs from early and late passages revealed significant alterations in the patterns of gene expression (8.8% of the genes were differentially expressed in hBMSCs versus hASCs, and 5.5% in rBMSCs versus rASCs). Gene expression changes were much less evident within the same cell type as aging occurred (0.7% in hMSCs and 0.9% in rMSC). Gene ontology analysis showed that functions involved in protein catabolism and regulation of pol II transcription were overrepresented in rASCs, whereas the regulation of IκB/nuclear factor-κB cascade were overrepresented in hBMSCs. Functional analysis of genes that were differentially expressed in rASCs and hBMSCs revealed that pathways involved in cell cycle, cell cycle checkpoints, protein-ubiquitination, and apoptosis were altered.
PMCID: PMC2713721  PMID: 18519682
15.  Enhancement of mesenchymal stem cell angiogenic capacity and stemness by a biomimetic hydrogel scaffold 
Biomaterials  2011;33(1):80-90.
In this study, we examined the capacity of a biomimetic pullulan–collagen hydrogel to create a functional biomaterial-based stem cell niche for the delivery of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into wounds. Murine bone marrow-derived MSCs were seeded into hydrogels and compared to MSCs grown in standard culture conditions. Hydrogels induced MSC secretion of angiogenic cytokines and expression of transcription factors associated with maintenance of pluripotency and self-renewal (Oct4, Sox2, Klf4) when compared to MSCs grown in standard conditions. An excisonal wound healing model was used to compare the ability of MSC-hydrogel constructs versus MSC injection alone to accelerate wound healing. Injection of MSCs did not significantly improve time to wound closure. In contrast, wounds treated with MSC-seeded hydrogels showed significantly accelerated healing and a return of skin appendages. Bioluminescence imaging and FACS analysis of luciferase+/GFP+ MSCs indicated that stem cells delivered within the hydrogel remained viable longer and demonstrated enhanced engraftment efficiency than those delivered via injection. Engrafted MSCs were found to differentiate into fibroblasts, pericytes and endothelial cells but did not contribute to the epidermis. Wounds treated with MSC-seeded hydrogels demonstrated significantly enhanced angiogenesis, which was associated with increased levels of VEGF and other angiogenic cytokines within the wounds. Our data suggest that biomimetic hydrogels provide a functional niche capable of augmenting MSC regenerative potential and enhancing wound healing.
PMCID: PMC3997302  PMID: 21963148
Mesenchymal stem cell; Hydrogel; Wound healing; Growth factors
16.  Current Methods of Adipogenic Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells 
Stem Cells and Development  2011;20(10):1793-1804.
There has been a recent increase in our understanding in the isolation, culture, and differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Concomitantly, the availability of MSCs has increased, with cells now commercially available, including human MSCs from adipose tissue and bone marrow. Despite an increased understanding of MSC biology and an increase in their availability, standardization of techniques for adipogenic differentiation of MSCs is lacking. The following review will explore the variability in adipogenic differentiation in vitro, specifically in 3T3-L1 and primary MSCs derived from both adipose tissue and bone marrow. A review of alternative methods of adipogenic induction is also presented, including the use of specific peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma agonists as well as bone morphogenetic proteins. Finally, we define a standard, commonly used adipogenic differentiation medium in the hopes that this will be adopted for the future standardization of laboratory techniques—however, we also highlight the essentially arbitrary nature of this decision. With the current, rapid pace of electronic publications, it becomes imperative for standardization of such basic techniques so that interlaboratory results may be easily compared and interpreted.
PMCID: PMC3182038  PMID: 21526925
17.  Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells promote growth and angiogenesis of breast and prostate tumors 
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are known to migrate to tumor tissues. This behavior of MSCs has been exploited as a tumor-targeting strategy for cell-based cancer therapy. However, the effects of MSCs on tumor growth are controversial. This study was designed to determine the effect of MSCs on the growth of breast and prostate tumors.
Bone marrow-derived MSCs (BM-MSCs) were isolated and characterized. Effects of BM-MSCs on tumor cell proliferation were analyzed in a co-culture system with mouse breast cancer cell 4T1 or human prostate cancer cell DU145. Tumor cells were injected into nude mice subcutaneously either alone or coupled with BM-MSCs. The expression of cell proliferation and angiogenesis-related proteins in tumor tissues were immunofluorescence analyzed. The angiogenic effect of BM-MSCs was detected using a tube formation assay. The effects of the crosstalk between tumor cells and BM-MSCs on expression of angiogenesis related markers were examined by immunofluorescence and real-time PCR.
Both co-culturing with mice BM-MSCs (mBM-MSCs) and treatment with mBM-MSC-conditioned medium enhanced the growth of 4T1 cells. Co-injection of 4T1 cells and mBM-MSCs into nude mice led to increased tumor size compared with injection of 4T1 cells alone. Similar experiments using DU145 cells and human BM-MSCs (hBM-MSCs) instead of 4T1 cells and mBM-MSCs obtained consistent results. Compared with tumors induced by injection of tumor cells alone, the blood vessel area was greater in tumors from co-injection of tumor cells with BM-MSCs, which correlated with decreased central tumor necrosis and increased tumor cell proliferation. Furthermore, both conditioned medium from hBM-MSCs alone and co-cultures of hBM-MSCs with DU145 cells were able to promote tube formation ability of human umbilical vein endothelial cells. When hBM-MSCs are exposed to the DU145 cell environment, the expression of markers associated with neovascularization (macrophage inflammatory protein-2, vascular endothelial growth factor, transforming growth factor-beta and IL-6) was increased.
These results indicate that BM-MSCs promote tumor growth and suggest that the crosstalk between tumor cells and BM-MSCs increased the expression of pro-angiogenic factors, which may have induced tumor cell proliferation and angiogenesis thereby increasing solid tumor growth.
PMCID: PMC3707041  PMID: 23763837
Mesenchymal Stem Cells; Tumor Growth; Angiogenesis
18.  Comparing the osteogenic potential of canine mesenchymal stem cells derived from adipose tissues, bone marrow, umbilical cord blood, and Wharton's jelly for treating bone defects 
Journal of Veterinary Science  2012;13(3):299-310.
Alternative sources of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for replacing bone marrow (BM) have been extensively investigated in the field of bone tissue engineering. The purpose of this study was to compare the osteogenic potential of canine MSCs derived from adipose tissue (AT), BM, umbilical cord blood (UCB), and Wharton's jelly (WJ) using in vitro culture techniques and in vivo orthotopic implantation assays. After canine MSCs were isolated from various tissues, the proliferation and osteogenic potential along with vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) production were measured and compared in vitro. For the in vivo assay, MSCs derived from each type of tissue were mixed with β-tricalcium phosphate and implanted into segmental bone defects in dogs. Among the different types of MSCs, AT-MSCs had a higher proliferation potential and BM-MSCs produced the most VEGF. AT-MSCs and UCB-MSCs showed greater in vitro osteogenic potential compared to the other cells. Radiographic and histological analyses showed that all tested MSCs had similar osteogenic capacities, and the level of new bone formation was much higher with implants containing MSCs than cell-free implants. These results indicate that AT-MSCs, UCB-MSCs, and WJ-MSCs can potentially be used in place of BM-MSCs for clinical bone engineering procedures.
PMCID: PMC3467406  PMID: 23000587
cell source; dogs; mesenchymal stem cells; osteogenesis
19.  Hypoxia Impedes Vasculogenesis of In Vitro Engineered Bone 
Tissue Engineering. Part A  2011;18(1-2):208-218.
To ensure the survival of engineered bone after implantation, we combined human endothelial colony forming cells (ECFCs) and multipotent stromal cells (MSCs) as a proof of concept in a co-culture model to create in vitro prevascularized bone constructs. We hypothesized that a hypoxic stimulus will contribute to prevascularization of engineered bone. Bone marrow-derived MSCs and ECFCs from human adult peripheral blood were allowed to form co-culture pellets containing ECFCs and MSCs (1:4) or MSCs only in controls. After culture under normoxia or hypoxia (5%), pellets were harvested and processed for immunohistochemistry of CD31, α-smooth muscle actin, and osteocalcin. Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor and SDF-1α was analyzed by PCR to elucidate their involvement in hypoxic stimulation of prevascularization. The normoxic condition in co-cultures of MSCs and ECFCs supported the formation and maintenance of prevascular structures, including organized CD31-positive cells embraced by differentiated mural cells. These structures failed to form in hypoxic conditions, thereby rejecting the hypothesis that hypoxia stimulates prevasculogenesis in three-dimensional engineered bone constructs. Further, the formation of prevascular structures was paralleled by increased SDF-1α expression. It is suggested that actual oxygen levels were below 5% in the hypoxic co-cultures, which prevented prevascular structure formation. In conclusion, our normoxic co-culture model containing cells from clinically relevant sources sustained simultaneous endothelial, smooth muscle, and osteogenic differentiation.
PMCID: PMC3246420  PMID: 21859278
20.  Biologic Properties of Mesenchymal Stem Cells Derived From Bone Marrow and Adipose Tissue 
Journal of cellular biochemistry  2006;99(5):1285-1297.
The biologic characteristics of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) isolated from two distinct tissues, bone marrow and adipose tissue were evaluated in these studies. MSCs derived from human and non-human primate (rhesus monkey) tissue sources were compared. The data indicate that MSCs isolated from rhesus bone marrow (rBMSCs) and human adipose tissue (hASCs) had more similar biologic properties than MSCs of rhesus adipose tissue (rASCs) and human bone marrow MSCs (hBMSCs). Analyses of in vitro growth kinetics revealed shorter doubling time for rBMSCs and hASCs. rBMSCs and hASCs underwent significantly more population doublings than the other MSCs. MSCs from all sources showed a marked decrease in telomerase activity over extended culture; however, they maintained their mean telomere length. All of the MSCs expressed embryonic stem cell markers, Oct-4, Rex-1, and Sox-2 for at least 10 passages. Early populations of MSCs types showed similar multilineage differentiation capability. However, only the rBMSCs and hASCs retain greater differentiation efficiency at higher passages. Overall in vitro characterization of MSCs from these two species and tissue sources revealed a high level of common biologic properties. However, the results demonstrate clear biologic distinctions, as well.
PMCID: PMC4048742  PMID: 16795045
mesenchymal stem cells; bone marrow; adipose tissue; differentiation; telomerase; transcription factors
21.  Therapeutic potential of adult bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells in diseases of the skeleton 
Journal of cellular biochemistry  2010;111(2):249-257.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are the most popular among the adult stem cells in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Since their discovery and functional characterization in the late sixties and early seventies, MSCs or MSC-like cells have been obtained from various mesodermal and non-mesodermal tissues, although majority of the therapeutic applications involved bone marrow derived MSCs. Based on its mesenchymal origin, it was predicted earlier that MSCs only can differentiate into mesengenic lineages like bone, cartilage, fat or muscle. However, varied isolation and cell culturing methods identified subsets of MSCs in the bone marrow which not only differentiated into mesenchymal lineages, but also into ectodermal and endodermal derivatives. Although, true pluripotent status is yet to be established, MSCs have been successfully used in bone and cartilage regeneration in osteoporotic fracture and arthritis respectively and in the repair of cardiac tissue following myocardial infarction. Immunosuppressive properties of MSCs extend utility of MSCs to reduce complications of graft versus host disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Homing of MSCs to sites of tissue injury, including tumor, is well established. In addition to their ability in tissue regeneration, MSCs can be genetically engineered ex vivo for delivery of therapeutic molecule(s) to the sites of injury or tumorigenesis as cell therapy vehicles. MSCs tend to lose surface receptors for trafficking and have been reported to develop sarcoma in long-term culture. In this article, we reviewed the current status of MSCs with special emphasis to therapeutic application in bone-related diseases.
PMCID: PMC2946500  PMID: 20506559
22.  Human umbilical cord tissue-derived mesenchymal stromal cells attenuate remodeling after myocardial infarction by proangiogenic, antiapoptotic, and endogenous cell-activation mechanisms 
Among the plethora of cells under investigation to restore a functional myocardium, mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) have been granted considerable interest. However, whereas the beneficial effects of bone marrow MSCs (BM-MSCs) in the context of the diseased heart are widely reported, data are still scarce on MSCs from the umbilical cord matrix (UCM-MSCs). Herein we report on the effect of UCM-MSC transplantation to the infarcted murine heart, seconded by the dissection of the molecular mechanisms at play.
Human umbilical cord tissue-derived MSCs (UCX®), obtained by using a proprietary technology developed by ECBio, were delivered via intramyocardial injection to C57BL/6 females subjected to permanent ligation of the left descending coronary artery. Moreover, medium produced by cultured UCX® preconditioned under normoxia (CM) or hypoxia (CMH) was collected for subsequent in vitro assays.
Evaluation of the effects upon intramyocardial transplantation shows that UCX® preserved cardiac function and attenuated cardiac remodeling subsequent to myocardial infarction (MI). UCX® further led to increased capillary density and decreased apoptosis in the injured tissue. In vitro, UCX®-conditioned medium displayed (a) proangiogenic activity by promoting the formation of capillary-like structures by human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs), and (b) antiapoptotic activity in HL-1 cardiomyocytes subjected to hypoxia. Moreover, in adult murine cardiac Sca-1+ progenitor cells (CPCs), conditioned medium enhanced mitogenic activity while activating a gene program characteristic of cardiomyogenic differentiation.
UCX® preserve cardiac function after intramyocardial transplantation in a MI murine model. The cardioprotective effects of UCX® were attributed to paracrine mechanisms that appear to enhance angiogenesis, limit the extent of the apoptosis, augment proliferation, and activate a pool of resident CPCs. Overall, these results suggest that UCX® should be considered an alternative cell source when designing new therapeutic approaches to treat MI.
PMCID: PMC4055157  PMID: 24411922
23.  Mesenchymal stem cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells modulate T-cell phenotypes in allergic rhinitis 
Allergy  2012;67(10):1215-1222.
Human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) possess remarkable self-renewal capacity and the potential to differentiate into novel cell types, such as mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). iPSC-MSCs have been shown to enhance tissue regeneration and attenuate tissue ischaemia; however, their contribution to the immune regulation of Th2-skewed allergic rhinitis (AR) and asthma remains unclear.
This study compared the immunomodulatory effects of iPSC-MSCs and bone marrow-derived MSCs (BM-MSCs) on lymphocyte proliferation, T-cell phenotypes and cytokine production in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) in patients with AR, and investigated the possible molecular mechanisms underlying the immunomodulatory properties of iPSC-MSCs.
In co-cultures of PBMCs with iPSC-MSCs or BM-MSCs, lymphocyte proliferation was evaluated using 3H-thymidine (3H-TdR) uptake, carboxyfluorescein diacetate, succinimidyl ester (CFDA-SE) assays; the regulatory T-cell (Treg) phenotype was determined by flow cytometry, and cytokine levels were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The immunomodulatory properties of both MSCs were further evaluated using NS398 and transwell experiments.
Similar to BM-MSCs, we determined that iPSC-MSCs significantly inhibit lymphocyte proliferation and promote Treg response in PBMCs (P < 0.05). Accordingly, the cytokine milieu (IFN-γ, IL-4, IL-5, IL-10 and IL-13) in the supernatants of PBMCs changed significantly (P < 0.05). The immunomodulatory properties of iPSC-MSCs and BM-MSCs were associated with prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production and cell–cell contact.
These data demonstrate that iPSC-MSCs are capable of modulating T-cell phenotypes towards Th2 suppression through inducing Treg expansion, suggesting that iPSC-MSCs can be used as an alternative candidate to adult MSCs to treat allergic airway diseases.
PMCID: PMC3555482  PMID: 22882409
allergic rhinitis; immunomodulation; induced pluripotent stem cells; mesenchymal stem cells; T cell
24.  Comparative Analysis of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells from Bone Marrow, Adipose Tissue, and Umbilical Cord Blood as Sources of Cell Therapy 
Various source-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been considered for cell therapeutics in incurable diseases. To characterize MSCs from different sources, we compared human bone marrow (BM), adipose tissue (AT), and umbilical cord blood-derived MSCs (UCB-MSCs) for surface antigen expression, differentiation ability, proliferation capacity, clonality, tolerance for aging, and paracrine activity. Although MSCs from different tissues have similar levels of surface antigen expression, immunosuppressive activity, and differentiation ability, UCB-MSCs had the highest rate of cell proliferation and clonality, and significantly lower expression of p53, p21, and p16, well known markers of senescence. Since paracrine action is the main action of MSCs, we examined the anti-inflammatory activity of each MSC under lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammation. Co-culture of UCB-MSCs with LPS-treated rat alveolar macrophage, reduced expression of inflammatory cytokines including interleukin-1α (IL-1α), IL-6, and IL-8 via angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1). Using recombinant Ang-1 as potential soluble paracrine factor or its small interference RNA (siRNA), we found that Ang-1 secretion was responsible for this beneficial effect in part by preventing inflammation. Our results demonstrate that primitive UCB-MSCs have biological advantages in comparison to adult sources, making UCB-MSCs a useful model for clinical applications of cell therapy.
PMCID: PMC3794764  PMID: 24005862
umbilical cord blood; bone marrow; adipo tissue; mesenchymal stem cell; expansion; senescence; anti-inflammation; angiopoietin-1; cell therapy
25.  Long term culture of mesenchymal stem cells in hypoxia promotes a genetic program maintaining their undifferentiated and multipotent status 
BMC Cell Biology  2011;12:12.
In the bone marrow, hematopietic and mesenchymal stem cells form a unique niche in which the oxygen tension is low. Hypoxia may have a role in maintaining stem cell fate, self renewal and multipotency. However, whereas most studies addressed the effect of transient in vitro exposure of MSC to hypoxia, permanent culture under hypoxia should reflect the better physiological conditions.
Morphologic studies, differentiation and transcriptional profiling experiments were performed on MSC cultured in normoxia (21% O2) versus hypoxia (5% O2) for up to passage 2. Cells at passage 0 and at passage 2 were compared, and those at passage 0 in hypoxia generated fewer and smaller colonies than in normoxia. In parallel, MSC displayed (>4 fold) inhibition of genes involved in DNA metabolism, cell cycle progression and chromosome cohesion whereas transcripts involved in adhesion and metabolism (CD93, ESAM, VWF, PLVAP, ANGPT2, LEP, TCF1) were stimulated. Compared to normoxic cells, hypoxic cells were morphologically undifferentiated and contained less mitochondrias. After this lag phase, cells at passage 2 in hypoxia outgrew the cells cultured in normoxia and displayed an enhanced expression of genes (4-60 fold) involved in extracellular matrix assembly (SMOC2), neural and muscle development (NOG, GPR56, SNTG2, LAMA) and epithelial development (DMKN). This group described herein for the first time was assigned by the Gene Ontology program to "plasticity".
The duration of hypoxemia is a critical parameter in the differentiation capacity of MSC. Even in growth promoting conditions, hypoxia enhanced a genetic program that maintained the cells undifferentiated and multipotent. This condition may better reflect the in vivo gene signature of MSC, with potential implications in regenerative medicine.
PMCID: PMC3073900  PMID: 21450070

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