Stem Cells International http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Theoretical and Practical Issues That Are Relevant When Scaling Up hMSC Microcarrier Production Processes Thu, 11 Feb 2016 17:18:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/4760414/ The potential of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) for allogeneic cell therapies has created a large amount of interest. However, this presupposes the availability of efficient scale-up procedures. Promising results have been reported for stirred bioreactors that operate with microcarriers. Recent publications focusing on microcarrier-based stirred bioreactors have demonstrated the successful use of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and suspension criteria (, ) for rapidly scaling up hMSC expansions from mL- to pilot scale. Nevertheless, one obstacle may be the formation of large microcarrier-cell-aggregates, which may result in mass transfer limitations and inhomogeneous distributions of stem cells in the culture broth. The dependence of microcarrier-cell-aggregate formation on impeller speed and shear stress levels was investigated for human adipose derived stromal/stem cells (hASCs) at the spinner scale by recording the Sauter mean diameter () versus time. Cultivation at the suspension criteria provided values between 0.2 and 0.7 mm, the highest cell densities (1.25 × 106 cells mL−1 hASCs), and the highest expansion factors (117.0 ± 4.7 on day 7), while maintaining the expression of specific surface markers. Furthermore, suitability of the suspension criterion was investigated for scaling up microcarrier-based processes in wave-mixed bioreactors for the first time. Valentin Jossen, Cedric Schirmer, Dolman Mostafa Sindi, Regine Eibl, Matthias Kraume, Ralf Pörtner, and Dieter Eibl Copyright © 2016 Valentin Jossen et al. All rights reserved. Fate and Effect of Intravenously Infused Mesenchymal Stem Cells in a Mouse Model of Hepatic Ischemia Reperfusion Injury and Resection Thu, 11 Feb 2016 11:47:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5761487/ Liver ischemia reperfusion injury (IRI) is inevitable during transplantation and resection and is characterized by hepatocellular injury. Therapeutic strategies to reduce IRI and accelerate regeneration could offer major benefits. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are reported to have anti-inflammatory and regeneration promoting properties. We investigated the effect of MSC in a model of combined IRI and partial resection in the mouse. Hepatic IRI was induced by occlusion of 70% of the blood flow during 60 minutes, followed by 30% hepatectomy. 2 × 105 MSC or PBS were infused 2 hours before or 1 hour after IRI. Six, 48, and 120 hours postoperatively mice were sacrificed. Liver damage was evaluated by liver enzymes, histology, and inflammatory markers. Regeneration was determined by liver/body weight ratio, proliferating hepatocytes, and TGF-β levels. Fate of MSC was visualized with 3D cryoimaging. Infusion of 2 × 105 MSC 2 hours before or 1 hour after IRI and resection showed no beneficial effects. Tracking revealed that MSC were trapped in the lungs and did not migrate to the site of injury and many cells had already disappeared 2 hours after infusion. Based on these findings we conclude that intravenously infused MSC disappear rapidly and were unable to induce beneficial effects in a clinically relevant model of IRI and resection. T. C. Saat, S. van den Engel, W. Bijman-Lachger, S. S. Korevaar, M. J. Hoogduijn, J. N. M. IJzermans, and R. W. F. de Bruin Copyright © 2016 T. C. Saat et al. All rights reserved. Tumor Mesenchymal Stem-Like Cell as a Prognostic Marker in Primary Glioblastoma Thu, 11 Feb 2016 11:23:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/6756983/ The isolation from brain tumors of tumor mesenchymal stem-like cells (tMSLCs) suggests that these cells play a role in creating a microenvironment for tumor initiation and progression. The clinical characteristics of patients with primary glioblastoma (pGBM) positive for tMSLCs have not been determined. This study analyzed samples from 82 patients with pGBM who had undergone tumor removal, pathological diagnosis, and isolation of tMSLC from April 2009 to October 2014. Survival, extent of resection, molecular markers, and tMSLC culture results were statistically evaluated. Median overall survival was 18.6 months, 15.0 months in tMSLC-positive patients and 29.5 months in tMSLC-negative patients (). Multivariate cox regression model showed isolation of tMSLC (OR = 2.5, 95% CI = 1.1~5.6, ) showed poor outcome while larger extent of resection (OR = 0.5, 95% CI = 0.2~0.8, ) has association with better outcome. The presence of tMSLCs isolated from the specimen of pGBM is associated with the survival of patient. Seon-Jin Yoon, Jin-Kyoung Shim, Jong Hee Chang, Ju Hyung Moon, Tae-Hoon Roh, Kyoung Su Sung, Ji-Hyun Lee, Eui-Hyun Kim, Sun Ho Kim, Yong-Kil Hong, Su-Jae Lee, Yong-Min Huh, and Seok-Gu Kang Copyright © 2016 Seon-Jin Yoon et al. All rights reserved. Advances in Adipose-Derived Stem Cells Isolation, Characterization, and Application in Regenerative Tissue Engineering Thu, 11 Feb 2016 11:22:17 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/3206807/ Obesity is a complex, multifactorial disease that has been extensively researched in recent times. Obesity is characterized by excess deposition of adipose tissue in response to surplus energy. Despite the negative connotations of adipose tissue (AT), it serves as a critical endocrine organ. Adipose tissue is a source of several adipokines and cytokines which have been deemed important for both normal metabolic function and disease formation. The discoveries of metabolically active brown AT in adult humans and adipose tissue derived stem cells (ADSC) have been key findings in the past decade with potential therapeutic implications. ADSCs represent an enticing pool of multipotent adult stem cells because of their noncontroversial nature, relative abundance, ease of isolation, and expandability. A decade and a half since the discovery of ADSCs, the scientific community is still working to uncover their therapeutic potential in a wide range of diseases. In this review, we provide an overview of the recent developments in the field of ADSCs and examine their potential use in transplantation and cell-based therapies for the regeneration of diseased organs and systems. We also hope to provide perspective on how to best utilize this readily available, powerful pool of stem cells in the future. Umesh D. Wankhade, Michael Shen, Ravindra Kolhe, and Sadanand Fulzele Copyright © 2016 Umesh D. Wankhade et al. All rights reserved. Glioma Stem Cells and Their Microenvironments: Providers of Challenging Therapeutic Targets Wed, 10 Feb 2016 14:20:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5728438/ Malignant gliomas are aggressive brain tumors with limited therapeutic options, possibly because of highly tumorigenic subpopulations of glioma stem cells. These cells require specific microenvironments to maintain their “stemness,” described as perivascular and hypoxic niches. Each of those niches induces particular signatures in glioma stem cells (e.g., activation of Notch signaling, secretion of VEGF, bFGF, SDF1 for the vascular niche, activation of HIF2α, and metabolic reprogramming for hypoxic niche). Recently, accumulated knowledge on tumor-associated macrophages, possibly delineating a third niche, has underlined the role of immune cells in glioma progression, via specific chemoattractant factors and cytokines, such as macrophage-colony stimulation factor (M-CSF). The local or myeloid origin of this new component of glioma stem cells niche is yet to be determined. Such niches are being increasingly recognized as key regulators involved in multiple stages of disease progression, therapy resistance, immune-escaping, and distant metastasis, thereby substantially impacting the future development of frontline interventions in clinical oncology. This review focuses on the microenvironment impact on the glioma stem cell biology, emphasizing GSCs cross talk with hypoxic, perivascular, and immune niches and their potential use as targeted therapy. Elena Codrici, Ana-Maria Enciu, Ionela-Daniela Popescu, Simona Mihai, and Cristiana Tanase Copyright © 2016 Elena Codrici et al. All rights reserved. Temporal Analyses of the Response of Intervertebral Disc Cells and Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Nutrient Deprivation Wed, 10 Feb 2016 09:06:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5415901/ Much emphasis has been placed recently on the repair of degenerate discs using implanted cells, such as disc cells or bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). This study examines the temporal response of bovine and human nucleus pulposus (NP) cells and MSCs cultured in monolayer following exposure to altered levels of glucose (0, 3.15, and 4.5 g/L) and foetal bovine serum (0, 10, and 20%) using an automated time-lapse imaging system. NP cells were also exposed to the cell death inducers, hydrogen peroxide and staurosporine, in comparison to serum starvation. We have demonstrated that human NP cells show an initial “shock” response to reduced nutrition (glucose). However, as time progresses, NP cells supplemented with serum recover with minimal evidence of cell death. Human NP cells show no evidence of proliferation in response to nutrient supplementation, whereas MSCs showed greater response to increased nutrition. When specifically inducing NP cell death with hydrogen peroxide and staurosporine, as expected, the cell number declined. These results support the concept that implanted NP cells or MSCs may be capable of survival in the nutrient-poor environment of the degenerate human disc, which has important clinical implications for the development of IVD cell therapies. Sarah A. Turner, Karina T. Wright, Philip N. Jones, Birender Balain, and Sally Roberts Copyright © 2016 Sarah A. Turner et al. All rights reserved. Phenotypic and Functional Characterization of Mesenchymal Stem/Multipotent Stromal Cells from Decidua Basalis of Human Term Placenta Wed, 10 Feb 2016 07:56:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5184601/ Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) therapies for the treatment of diseases associated with inflammation and oxidative stress employ primarily bone marrow MSCs (BMMSCs) and other MSC types such as MSC from the chorionic villi of human term placentae (pMSCs). These MSCs are not derived from microenvironments associated with inflammation and oxidative stress, unlike MSCs from the decidua basalis of the human term placenta (DBMSCs). DBMSCs were isolated and then extensively characterized. Differentiation of DBMSCs into three mesenchymal lineages (adipocytes, osteocytes, and chondrocytes) was performed. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and flow cytometry techniques were also used to characterize the gene and protein expression profiles of DBMSCs, respectively. In addition, sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was performed to detect proteins secreted by DBMSCs. Finally, the migration and proliferation abilities of DBMSCs were also determined. DBMSCs were positive for MSC markers and HLA-ABC. DBMSCs were negative for hematopoietic and endothelial markers, costimulatory molecules, and HLA-DR. Functionally, DBMSCs differentiated into three mesenchymal lineages, proliferated, and migrated in response to a number of stimuli. Most importantly, these cells express and secrete a distinct combination of cytokines, growth factors, and immune molecules that reflect their unique microenvironment. Therefore, DBMSCs could be attractive, alternative candidates for MSC-based therapies that treat diseases associated with inflammation and oxidative stress. F. M. Abomaray, M. A. Al Jumah, K. O. Alsaad, D. Jawdat, A. Al Khaldi, A. S. AlAskar, S. Al Harthy, A. M. Al Subayyil, T. Khatlani, A. O. Alawad, A. Alkushi, B. Kalionis, and M. H. Abumaree Copyright © 2016 F. M. Abomaray et al. All rights reserved. Development of Synthetic and Natural Materials for Tissue Engineering Applications Using Adipose Stem Cells Wed, 10 Feb 2016 06:51:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5786257/ Adipose stem cells have prominent implications in tissue regeneration due to their abundance and relative ease of harvest from adipose tissue and their abilities to differentiate into mature cells of various tissue lineages and secrete various growth cytokines. Development of tissue engineering techniques in combination with various carrier scaffolds and adipose stem cells offers great potential in overcoming the existing limitations constraining classical approaches used in plastic and reconstructive surgery. However, as most tissue engineering techniques are new and highly experimental, there are still many practical challenges that must be overcome before laboratory research can lead to large-scale clinical applications. Tissue engineering is currently a growing field of medical research; in this review, we will discuss the progress in research on biomaterials and scaffolds for tissue engineering applications using adipose stem cells. Yunfan He and Feng Lu Copyright © 2016 Yunfan He and Feng Lu. All rights reserved. Factor-Reduced Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Efficiently Differentiate into Neurons Independent of the Number of Reprogramming Factors Tue, 09 Feb 2016 14:17:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/4736159/ Reprogramming of somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by overexpression of the transcription factors OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, and c-Myc holds great promise for the development of personalized cell replacement therapies. In an attempt to minimize the risk of chromosomal disruption and to simplify reprogramming, several studies demonstrated that a reduced set of reprogramming factors is sufficient to generate iPSC. We recently showed that a reduction of reprogramming factors in murine cells not only reduces reprogramming efficiency but also may worsen subsequent differentiation. To prove whether this is also true for human cells, we compared the efficiency of neuronal differentiation of iPSC generated from fetal human neural stem cells with either one (OCT4; ) or two (OCT4, KLF4; ) reprogramming factors with iPSC produced from human fibroblasts using three () or four reprogramming factors (). After four weeks of coculture with PA6 stromal cells, neuronal differentiation of and was as efficient as or . We conclude that a reduction of reprogramming factors in human cells does reduce reprogramming efficiency but does not alter subsequent differentiation into neural lineages. This is of importance for the development of future application of iPSC in cell replacement therapies. Andreas Hermann, Jeong Beom Kim, Sumitra Srimasorn, Holm Zaehres, Peter Reinhardt, Hans R. Schöler, and Alexander Storch Copyright © 2016 Andreas Hermann et al. All rights reserved. Epigallocatechin-3-gallate Protects against Hydrogen Peroxide-Induced Inhibition of Osteogenic Differentiation of Human Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Tue, 09 Feb 2016 12:00:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/7532798/ Oxidative stress induces bone loss and osteoporosis, and epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) may be used to combat these diseases due to its antioxidative property. Herein, oxidative stress in human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) was induced by H2O2, resulting in an adverse effect on their osteogenic differentiation. However, this H2O2-induced adverse effect was nullified when the cells were treated with EGCG. In addition, treatment of BM-MSCs with EGCG alone also resulted in the enhancement of osteogenic differentiation of BM-MSCs. After EGCG treatment, expressions of β-catenin and cyclin D1 were upregulated, suggesting that the Wnt pathway was involved in the effects of EGCG on the osteogenic differentiation of BM-MSCs. This was also confirmed by the fact that the Wnt pathway inhibitor, Dickkopf-1 (DKK-1), can nullify the EGCG-induced enhancement effect on BM-MSC’s osteogenic differentiation. Hence, our results suggested that EGCG can reduce the effects of oxidative stress on Wnt pathway in osteogenic cells, which supported a potentially promising therapy of bone disorders induced by oxidative stress. Considering its positive effects on BM-MSCs, EGCG may also be beneficial for stem cell-based bone repair. Dawei Wang, Yonghui Wang, Shihong Xu, Fu Wang, Bomin Wang, Ke Han, Daqing Sun, and Lianxin Li Copyright © 2016 Dawei Wang et al. All rights reserved. Adipose-Derived Stem Cells for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Applications Mon, 08 Feb 2016 12:15:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/6737345/ Adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) are a mesenchymal stem cell source with properties of self-renewal and multipotential differentiation. Compared to bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMSCs), ASCs can be derived from more sources and are harvested more easily. Three-dimensional (3D) tissue engineering scaffolds are better able to mimic the in vivo cellular microenvironment, which benefits the localization, attachment, proliferation, and differentiation of ASCs. Therefore, tissue-engineered ASCs are recognized as an attractive substitute for tissue and organ transplantation. In this paper, we review the characteristics of ASCs, as well as the biomaterials and tissue engineering methods used to proliferate and differentiate ASCs in a 3D environment. Clinical applications of tissue-engineered ASCs are also discussed to reveal the potential and feasibility of using tissue-engineered ASCs in regenerative medicine. Ru Dai, Zongjie Wang, Roya Samanipour, Kyo-in Koo, and Keekyoung Kim Copyright © 2016 Ru Dai et al. All rights reserved. The Comparison of Adipose Stem Cell and Placental Stem Cell in Secretion Characteristics and in Facial Antiaging Mon, 08 Feb 2016 09:22:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/7315830/ Background. Mesenchymal stem cells are the most commonly used seed cells in biomedical research and tissue engineering. Their secretory proteins have also been proven to play an important role in tissue healing. Methods. We isolated adipose stem cells and placental stem cells and performed analysis examining characteristics. The secretory proteins were extracted from conditioned medium and analyzed by MALDI-TOF/TOF. The antiaging effect of conditioned mediums was evaluated by the results of facial skin application. Results. Adipose stem cells and placental stem cells were found to be very similar in their surface markers and multipotency. The specific proteins secreted from adipose stem cells were more adept at cell adhesion, migration, wound healing, and tissue remodeling, while the proteins secreted by placental stem cells were more adept at angiogenesis, cell proliferation, differentiation, cell survival, immunomodulation, and collagen degradation. While these two types of conditioned medium could improve the facial index, the improvement of Melanin index after injection of the adipose stem cell conditioned medium was much more significant. Conclusion. The results suggest that the secreted proteins are ideal cell-free substances for regeneration medicine, especially in the antiaging field. Yan Xu, Shilei Guo, Cui Wei, Honglan Li, Lei Chen, Chang Yin, and Chuansen Zhang Copyright © 2016 Yan Xu et al. All rights reserved. Manufacturing of Human Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stromal Cells on Microcarriers in a Dynamic System for Clinical Use Mon, 08 Feb 2016 09:19:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/4834616/ The great properties of human mesenchymal stromal cells (hMSCs) make these cells an important tool in regenerative medicine. Because of the limitations of hMSCs derived from the bone marrow during isolation and expansion, hMSCs derived from the umbilical cord stroma are a great alternative to overcome these issues. For a large expansion of these cells, we performed a process transfer from static culture to a dynamic system. For this reason, a microcarrier selection out of five microcarrier types was made to achieve a suitable growth surface for the cells. The growth characteristics and metabolite consumption and production were used to compare the cells growth in 12-well plate and spinner flask. The goal to determine relevant process parameters to transfer the expansion process into a stirred tank bioreactor was achieved. Florian Petry, J. Robert Smith, Jasmin Leber, Denise Salzig, Peter Czermak, and Mark L. Weiss Copyright © 2016 Florian Petry et al. All rights reserved. Innervation of Cochlear Hair Cells by Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neurons In Vitro Sun, 07 Feb 2016 11:54:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/1781202/ Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) may serve as an autologous source of replacement neurons in the injured cochlea, if they can be successfully differentiated and reconnected with residual elements in the damaged auditory system. Here, we explored the potential of hiPSC-derived neurons to innervate early postnatal hair cells, using established in vitro assays. We compared two hiPSC lines against a well-characterized hESC line. After ten days’ coculture in vitro, hiPSC-derived neural processes contacted inner and outer hair cells in whole cochlear explant cultures. Neural processes from hiPSC-derived neurons also made contact with hair cells in denervated sensory epithelia explants and expressed synapsin at these points of contact. Interestingly, hiPSC-derived neurons cocultured with hair cells at an early stage of differentiation formed synapses with a higher number of hair cells, compared to hiPSC-derived neurons cocultured at a later stage of differentiation. Notable differences in the innervation potentials of the hiPSC-derived neurons were also observed and variations existed between the hiPSC lines in their innervation efficiencies. Collectively, these data illustrate the promise of hiPSCs for auditory neuron replacement and highlight the need to develop methods to mitigate variabilities observed amongst hiPSC lines, in order to achieve reliable clinical improvements for patients. Niliksha Gunewardene, Duncan Crombie, Mirella Dottori, and Bryony A. Nayagam Copyright © 2016 Niliksha Gunewardene et al. All rights reserved. The Use of Stem Cells to Model Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Frontotemporal Dementia: From Basic Research to Regenerative Medicine Sun, 07 Feb 2016 09:02:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/9279516/ In recent years several genes have linked amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) as a spectrum disease; however little is known about what triggers their onset. With the ability to generate patient specific stem cell lines from somatic cells, it is possible to model disease without the need to transfect cells with exogenous DNA. These pluripotent stem cells have opened new avenues for identification of disease phenotypes and their relation to specific molecular pathways. Thus, as never before, compounds with potential applications for regenerative medicine can be specifically tailored in patient derived cultures. In this review, we discuss how patient specific induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have been used to model ALS and FTD and the most recent drug screening targets for these diseases. We also discuss how an iPSC bank would improve the quality of the available cell lines and how it would increase knowledge about the ALS/FTD disease spectrum. Erin C. Hedges, Vera J. Mehler, and Agnes L. Nishimura Copyright © 2016 Erin C. Hedges et al. All rights reserved. Standardizing Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stromal Cells for Translation to Clinical Use: Selection of GMP-Compliant Medium and a Simplified Isolation Method Thu, 04 Feb 2016 12:48:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/6810980/ Umbilical cord derived mesenchymal stromal cells (UC-MSCs) are a focus for clinical translation but standardized methods for isolation and expansion are lacking. Previously we published isolation and expansion methods for UC-MSCs which presented challenges when considering good manufacturing practices (GMP) for clinical translation. Here, a new and more standardized method for isolation and expansion of UC-MSCs is described. The new method eliminates dissection of blood vessels and uses a closed-vessel dissociation following enzymatic digestion which reduces contamination risk and manipulation time. The new method produced >10 times more cells per cm of UC than our previous method. When biographical variables were compared, more UC-MSCs per gram were isolated after vaginal birth compared to Caesarian-section births, an unexpected result. UC-MSCs were expanded in medium enriched with 2%, 5%, or 10% pooled human platelet lysate (HPL) eliminating the xenogeneic serum components. When the HPL concentrations were compared, media supplemented with 10% HPL had the highest growth rate, smallest cells, and the most viable cells at passage. UC-MSCs grown in 10% HPL had surface marker expression typical of MSCs, high colony forming efficiency, and could undergo trilineage differentiation. The new protocol standardizes manufacturing of UC-MSCs and enables clinical translation. J. Robert Smith, Kyle Pfeifer, Florian Petry, Natalie Powell, Jennifer Delzeit, and Mark L. Weiss Copyright © 2016 J. Robert Smith et al. All rights reserved. Mesenchymal Stromal Cells as Cell-Based Therapeutics for Wound Healing Thu, 04 Feb 2016 08:40:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/4157934/ Chronic wounds are a source of substantial morbidity for patients and are a major financial burden for the healthcare system. There are no current therapies that reliably improve nonhealing wounds or reverse pathological scarring. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) are a promising source of novel cell-based therapies due to the ease of their harvest and their integral role in the native wound repair process. Recent work has addressed the problems of loss of plasticity and off-target delivery through use of modern bioengineering techniques. Here we describe the applications of MSCs harvested from different sources to the wound healing process and recent advances in delivery of MSCs to targeted sites of injury. Samir Malhotra, Michael S. Hu, Clement D. Marshall, Tripp Leavitt, Alexander T. M. Cheung, Jennifer G. Gonzalez, Harleen Kaur, H. Peter Lorenz, and Michael T. Longaker Copyright © 2016 Samir Malhotra et al. All rights reserved. The Characteristics Variation of Hepatic Progenitors after TGF-β1-Induced Transition and EGF-Induced Reversion Wed, 03 Feb 2016 09:50:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/6304385/ Profibrogenesis cytokine, transforming growth factor- (TGF-) β1, induces hepatic progenitors experiencing epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) to matrix synthesis cells, even tumor initiating cells. Our previous data found that epidermal growth factor (EGF) blocks and reverses TGF-β1-induced transition. The aim of this study is to determine the characteristic changes of hepatic progenitors after TGF-β1-induced transition and EGF-induced reversion. Hepatic oval cells, rat hepatic progenitors, were isolated from rats fed a choline-deficient diet supplemented with ethionine. TGF-β1-containing medium was used for inducing EMT, while EGF-containing medium was used for reversing EMT. During TGF-β1-induced transition and EGF-induced reversion, hepatic oval cells sustained their progenitor cell marker expression, including α-fetoprotein, albumin, and cytokeratin-19. The proliferation ability and differentiation potential of these cells were suppressed by TGF-β1, while EGF resumed these capacities to the level similar to the control cells. RNA microarray analysis showed that most of the genes with significant changes after TGF-β1 incubation were recovered by EGF. Signal pathway analysis revealed that TGF-β1 impaired the pathways of cell cycle and cytochrome P450 detoxification, and EGF reverted TGF-β1 effects through activating MAPK and PI3K-Akt pathway. EGF reverses the characteristics impaired by TGF-β1 in hepatic oval cells, serving as a protective cytokine to hepatic progenitors. Ping Wang, Min Cong, Tianhui Liu, Aiting Yang, Guangyong Sun, Dong Zhang, Jian Huang, Shujie Sun, Jia Mao, Hong Ma, Jidong Jia, and Hong You Copyright © 2016 Ping Wang et al. All rights reserved. Towards Creating the Perfect In Vitro Cell Model Wed, 03 Feb 2016 09:15:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/3459730/ Malin K. B. Jonsson, Toon A. B. van Veen, Jane Synnergren, and Bruno Becker Copyright © 2016 Malin K. B. Jonsson et al. All rights reserved. Low Density Lipoprotein Receptor Related Proteins as Regulators of Neural Stem and Progenitor Cell Function Tue, 02 Feb 2016 13:39:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/2108495/ The central nervous system (CNS) is a highly organised structure. Many signalling systems work in concert to ensure that neural stem cells are appropriately directed to generate progenitor cells, which in turn mature into functional cell types including projection neurons, interneurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes. Herein we explore the role of the low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor family, in particular family members LRP1 and LRP2, in regulating the behaviour of neural stem and progenitor cells during development and adulthood. The ability of LRP1 and LRP2 to bind a diverse and extensive range of ligands, regulate ligand endocytosis, recruit nonreceptor tyrosine kinases for direct signal transduction and signal in conjunction with other receptors, enables them to modulate many crucial neural cell functions. Loic Auderset, Lila M. Landowski, Lisa Foa, and Kaylene M. Young Copyright © 2016 Loic Auderset et al. All rights reserved. Adult Stem Cells in Tissue Maintenance and Regeneration Tue, 02 Feb 2016 08:30:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/7362879/ Stefania Montagnani, Maria A. Rueger, Toru Hosoda, and Daria Nurzynska Copyright © 2016 Stefania Montagnani et al. All rights reserved. Highly Synchronized Expression of Lineage-Specific Genes during In Vitro Hepatic Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines Mon, 01 Feb 2016 11:15:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/8648356/ Human pluripotent stem cells- (hPSCs-) derived hepatocytes have the potential to replace many hepatic models in drug discovery and provide a cell source for regenerative medicine applications. However, the generation of fully functional hPSC-derived hepatocytes is still a challenge. Towards gaining better understanding of the differentiation and maturation process, we employed a standardized protocol to differentiate six hPSC lines into hepatocytes and investigated the synchronicity of the hPSC lines by applying RT-qPCR to assess the expression of lineage-specific genes (OCT4, NANOG, T, SOX17, CXCR4, CER1, HHEX, TBX3, PROX1, HNF6, AFP, HNF4a, KRT18, ALB, AAT, and CYP3A4) which serve as markers for different stages during liver development. The data was evaluated using correlation and clustering analysis, demonstrating that the expression of these markers is highly synchronized and correlated well across all cell lines. The analysis also revealed a distribution of the markers in groups reflecting the developmental stages of hepatocytes. Functional analysis of the differentiated cells further confirmed their hepatic phenotype. Taken together, these results demonstrate, on the molecular level, the highly synchronized differentiation pattern across multiple hPSC lines. Moreover, this study provides additional understanding for future efforts to improve the functionality of hPSC-derived hepatocytes and thereby increase the value of related models. Nidal Ghosheh, Björn Olsson, Josefina Edsbagge, Barbara Küppers-Munther, Mariska Van Giezen, Annika Asplund, Tommy B. Andersson, Petter Björquist, Helena Carén, Stina Simonsson, Peter Sartipy, and Jane Synnergren Copyright © 2016 Nidal Ghosheh et al. All rights reserved. Secretome of Olfactory Mucosa Mesenchymal Stem Cell, a Multiple Potential Stem Cell Mon, 01 Feb 2016 06:11:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/1243659/ Nasal olfactory mucosa mesenchymal stem cells (OM-MSCs) have the ability to promote regeneration in the nervous system in vivo. Moreover, with view to the potential for clinical application, OM-MSCs have the advantage of being easily accessible from patients and transplantable in an autologous manner, thus eliminating immune rejection and contentious ethical issues. So far, most studies have been focused on the role of OM-MSCs in central nervous system replacement. However, the secreted proteomics of OM-MSCs have not been reported yet. Here, proteins secreted by OM-MSCs cultured in serum-free conditions were separated on SDS-PAGE and identified by LC-MS/MS. As a result, a total of 274 secreted proteins were identified. These molecules are known to be important in neurotrophy, angiogenesis, cell growth, differentiation, and apoptosis, and inflammation which were highly correlated with the repair of central nervous system. The proteomic profiling of the OM-MSCs secretome might provide new insights into their nature in the neural recovery. However, proteomic analysis for clinical biomarkers of OM-MSCs needs to be further studied. Lite Ge, Miao Jiang, Da Duan, Zijun Wang, Linyu Qi, Xiaohua Teng, Zhenyu Zhao, Lei Wang, Yi Zhuo, Ping Chen, Xijing He, and Ming Lu Copyright © 2016 Lite Ge et al. All rights reserved. Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Peritoneal EMT and Fibrosis Sun, 31 Jan 2016 16:49:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/3543678/ Peritoneal dialysis is a form of renal replacement alternative to the hemodialysis. During this treatment, the peritoneal membrane acts as a permeable barrier for exchange of solutes and water. Continual exposure to dialysis solutions, as well as episodes of peritonitis and hemoperitoneum, can cause acute/chronic inflammation and injury to the peritoneal membrane, which undergoes progressive fibrosis, angiogenesis, and vasculopathy, eventually leading to discontinuation of the peritoneal dialysis. Among the different events controlling this pathological process, epithelial to mesenchymal transition of mesothelial cells plays a main role in the induction of fibrosis and in subsequent functional deterioration of the peritoneal membrane. Here, the main extracellular inducers and cellular players are described. Moreover, signaling pathways acting during this process are elucidated, with emphasis on signals delivered by TGF-β family members and by Toll-like/IL-1β receptors. The understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying fibrosis of the peritoneal membrane has both a basic and a translational relevance, since it may be useful for setup of therapies aimed at counteracting the deterioration as well as restoring the homeostasis of the peritoneal membrane. Raffaele Strippoli, Roberto Moreno-Vicente, Cecilia Battistelli, Carla Cicchini, Valeria Noce, Laura Amicone, Alessandra Marchetti, Miguel Angel del Pozo, and Marco Tripodi Copyright © 2016 Raffaele Strippoli et al. All rights reserved. Features of Microsystems for Cultivation and Characterization of Stem Cells with the Aim of Regenerative Therapy Sun, 31 Jan 2016 11:16:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/6023132/ Stem cells have infinite potential for regenerative therapy thanks to their advantageous ability which is differentiable to requisite cell types for recovery and self-renewal. The microsystem has been proved to be more helpful to stem cell studies compared to the traditional methods, relying on its advantageous feature of mimicking in vivo cellular environments as well as other profitable features such as minimum sample consumption for analysis and multiprocedures. A wide variety of microsystems were developed for stem cell studies; however, regenerative therapy-targeted applications of microtechnology should be more emphasized and gain more attractions since the regenerative therapy is one of ultimate goals of biologists and bioengineers. In this review, we introduce stem cell researches harnessing well-known microtechniques (microwell, micropattern, and microfluidic channel) in view point of physical principles and how these systems and principles have been implemented appropriately for characterizing stem cells and finding possible regenerative therapies. Biologists may gain information on the principles of microsystems to apply them to find solutions for their current challenges, and engineers may understand limitations of the conventional microsystems and find new chances for further developing practical microsystems. Through the well combination of engineers and biologists, the regenerative therapy-targeted stem cell researches harnessing microtechnology will find better suitable treatments for human disorders. Kihoon Ahn, Sung-Hwan Kim, Gi-Hun Lee, SeungJin Lee, Yun Seok Heo, and Joong Yull Park Copyright © 2016 Kihoon Ahn et al. All rights reserved. The Influence of Aging on the Regenerative Potential of Human Adipose Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Thu, 28 Jan 2016 13:41:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/2152435/ Tissue regeneration using human adipose derived mesenchymal stem cells (hASCs) has significant potential as a novel treatment for many degenerative bone and joint diseases. Previous studies have established that age negatively affects the proliferation status and the osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation potential of mesenchymal stem cells. The aim of this study was to assess the age-related maintenance of physiological function and differentiation potential of hASCs in vitro. hASCs were isolated from patients of four different age groups: (1) >20 years (), (2) >50 years (), (3) >60 years (), and (4) >70 years (). The hASCs were characterized according to the number of fibroblasts colony forming unit (CFU-F), proliferation rate, population doubling time (PDT), and quantified parameters of adipogenic, chondrogenic, and osteogenic differentiation. Compared to younger cells, aged hASCs had decreased proliferation rates, decreased chondrogenic and osteogenic potential, and increased senescent features. A shift in favor of adipogenic differentiation with increased age was also observed. As many bone and joint diseases increase in prevalence with age, it is important to consider the negative influence of age on hASCs viability, proliferation status, and multilineage differentiation potential when considering the potential therapeutic applications of hASCs. Monika Marędziak, Krzysztof Marycz, Krzysztof A. Tomaszewski, Katarzyna Kornicka, and Brandon Michael Henry Copyright © 2016 Monika Marędziak et al. All rights reserved. Antimicrobial Properties of Mesenchymal Stem Cells: Therapeutic Potential for Cystic Fibrosis Infection, and Treatment Tue, 26 Jan 2016 11:07:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/5303048/ Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a genetic disease in which the battle between pulmonary infection and inflammation becomes the major cause of morbidity and mortality. We have previously shown that human MSCs (hMSCs) decrease inflammation and infection in the in vivo murine model of CF. The studies in this paper focus on the specificity of the hMSC antimicrobial effectiveness using Pseudomonas aeruginosa (gram negative bacteria) and Staphylococcus aureus (gram positive bacteria). Our studies show that hMSCs secrete bioactive molecules which are antimicrobial in vitro against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus pneumonia, impacting the rate of bacterial growth and transition into colony forming units regardless of the pathogen. Further, we show that the hMSCs have the capacity to enhance antibiotic sensitivity, improving the capacity to kill bacteria. We present data which suggests that the antimicrobial effectiveness is associated with the capacity to slow bacterial growth and the ability of the hMSCs to secrete the antimicrobial peptide LL-37. Lastly, our studies demonstrate that the tissue origin of the hMSCs (bone marrow or adipose tissue derived), the presence of functional cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR: human, Cftr: mouse) activity, and response to effector cytokines can impact both hMSC phenotype and antimicrobial potency and efficacy. These studies demonstrate, the unique capacity of the hMSCs to manage different pathogens and the significance of their phenotype in both the antimicrobial and antibiotic enhancing activities. Morgan T. Sutton, David Fletcher, Santosh K. Ghosh, Aaron Weinberg, Rolf van Heeckeren, Sukhmani Kaur, Zhina Sadeghi, Adonis Hijaz, Jane Reese, Hillard M. Lazarus, Donald P. Lennon, Arnold I. Caplan, and Tracey L. Bonfield Copyright © 2016 Morgan T. Sutton et al. All rights reserved. Endothelial Plasticity: Shifting Phenotypes through Force Feedback Sun, 24 Jan 2016 13:47:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/9762959/ The endothelial lining of the vasculature is exposed to a large variety of biochemical and hemodynamic stimuli with different gradients throughout the vascular network. Adequate adaptation requires endothelial cells to be highly plastic, which is reflected by the remarkable heterogeneity of endothelial cells in tissues and organs. Hemodynamic forces such as fluid shear stress and cyclic strain are strong modulators of the endothelial phenotype and function. Although endothelial plasticity is essential during development and adult physiology, proatherogenic stimuli can induce adverse plasticity which contributes to disease. Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT), the hallmark of endothelial plasticity, was long thought to be restricted to embryonic development but has emerged as a pathologic process in a plethora of diseases. In this perspective we argue how shear stress and cyclic strain can modulate EndMT and discuss how this is reflected in atherosclerosis and pulmonary arterial hypertension. Guido Krenning, Valerio G. Barauna, José E. Krieger, Martin C. Harmsen, and Jan-Renier A. J. Moonen Copyright © 2016 Guido Krenning et al. All rights reserved. Epigenetic Regulation Shapes the Stem Cells State Sun, 24 Jan 2016 12:11:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/8143407/ Giuseppina Caretti, Libera Berghella, Aster Juan, Lucia Latella, and James Ryall Copyright © 2016 Giuseppina Caretti et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Tissue Homogenization to Support the Generation of GMP-Compliant Mesenchymal Stromal Cells from the Umbilical Cord Thu, 21 Jan 2016 09:26:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2016/3274054/ Recent studies have demonstrated that the umbilical cord (UC) is an excellent source of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs). However, current protocols for extracting and culturing UC-MSCs do not meet current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) standards, in part due to the use of xenogeneic reagents. To support the development of a cGMP-compliant method, we have examined an enzyme-free isolation method utilizing tissue homogenization (t-H) followed by culture in human platelet lysate (PL) supplemented media. The yield and viability of cells after t-H were comparable to those obtained after collagenase digestion (Col-D). Importantly, kinetic analysis of cultured cells showed logarithmic growth over 10 tested passages, although the rate of cell division was lower for t-H as compared to Col-D. This slower growth of t-H-derived cells was also reflected in their longer population doubling time. Interestingly, there was no difference in the expression of mesenchymal markers and trilineage differentiation potential of cells generated using either method. Finally, t-H-derived cells had greater clonogenic potential compared to Col-D/FBS but not Col-D/PL and were able to maintain CFU-F capacity through P7. This bench scale study demonstrates the possibility of generating therapeutic doses of good quality UC-MSCs within a reasonable length of time using t-H and PL. Ryan J. Emnett, Aparna Kaul, Aleksandar Babic, Vicki Geiler, Donna Regan, Gilad Gross, and Salem Akel Copyright © 2016 Ryan J. Emnett et al. All rights reserved.