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Potential role of stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth in inducing liver regeneration.

BACKGROUND AND AIM: Even with advancement of medical technologies, liver transplantation still faces several major challenges. Hence, other treatment modalities are urgently needed for patients with end-stage liver disease. Stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) was discovered to have highly proliferative and pluripotent properties; including differentiation into hepatocyte-like cells. This study aims to investigate the capability of intrasplenic transplanted SHED and SHED-Hep cells in inducing proliferation of stem cells and native hepatocytes in order to accelerate liver regeneration in liver fibrosis mice models.

METHODS: Three carbon tetrachloride (CCl4 )-injured male mice groups were used in this study. Two of those groups were transplanted with either SHED or SHED-Hep, while the other did not undergo transplantation. One age- and sex- matched healthy mice group was used as control. All specimens were immunohistochemically stained with anti-Ki-67 antibodies and anti-proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) antibodies before counter stained with hematoxylin-eosin.

RESULTS: Anti-Ki-67 antibodies staining: at both 8 and 12 weeks, proliferating activity was predominantly seen on both SHED- and SHED-Hep-transplanted CCl4 -injured mice groups, while control and non-transplanted CCl4 -injured mice group showed little to no sign of proliferation activity. Anti-PCNA staining: at both 8 and 12 weeks, significant proliferating activity was detected by PCNA staining, mainly on stem cells population area on SHED- and SHED-Hep-treated group.

CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, this study has provided the evidence that transplantation of SHED or SHED-Hep on liver-injured mice induced proliferation of both transplanted stem cells and native liver cells in order to accelerate liver regeneration.

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