Mesenchymal stem cells from cryopreserved human umbilical cord blood

Myoung Woo Lee, Jeongeun Choi, Mal Sook Yang, Young Joon Moon, Joon Seong Park, Hugh C Kim, Young Jin Kim
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 2004 July 16, 320 (1): 273-8
Umbilical cord blood (UCB) is well known to be a rich source of hematopoietic stem cells with practical and ethical advantages, but the presence of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in UCB has been disputed and it remains to be validated. In this study, we examined the ability of cryopreserved UCB harvests to produce cells with characteristics of MSCs. We were able to obtain homogeneous plastic adherent cells from the mononuclear cell fractions of cryopreserved UCB using our culture conditions. These adherent cell populations exhibited fibroblast-like morphology and typical mesenchymal-like immunophenotypes (CD73+, CD105+, and CD166+, etc.). These cells presented the self-renewal capacity and the mesenchymal cell-lineage potential to form bone, fat, and cartilage. Moreover, they expressed mRNAs of multi-lineage genes including SDF-1, NeuroD, and VEGF-R1, suggesting that the obtained cells had the multi-differentiation capacity as bone marrow-derived MSCs. These results indicate that cryopreserved human UCB fractions can be used as an alternative source of MSCs for experimental and therapeutic applications.

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