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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 832736, 9 pages
Research Article

Generation of Insulin-Producing Cells from Human Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells: Comparison of Three Differentiation Protocols

1Department of Biotechnology, Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura 35516, Egypt
2Department of Nephrology, Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura 35516, Egypt
3Department of Pathology, Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura 35516, Egypt
4Department of Immunology, Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura 35516, Egypt
5Zewail University of Science and Technology, 6th of October City, Giza 12588, Egypt
6Department of Urology, Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura 35516, Egypt

Received 9 January 2014; Revised 3 March 2014; Accepted 12 March 2014; Published 10 April 2014

Academic Editor: Aijun Wang

Copyright © 2014 Mahmoud M. Gabr et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction. Many protocols were utilized for directed differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to form insulin-producing cells (IPCs). We compared the relative efficiency of three differentiation protocols. Methods. Human bone marrow-derived MSCs (HBM-MSCs) were obtained from three insulin-dependent type 2 diabetic patients. Differentiation into IPCs was carried out by three protocols: conophylline-based (one-step protocol), trichostatin-A-based (two-step protocol), and β-mercaptoethanol-based (three-step protocol). At the end of differentiation, cells were evaluated by immunolabeling for insulin production, expression of pancreatic endocrine genes, and release of insulin and c-peptide in response to increasing glucose concentrations. Results. By immunolabeling, the proportion of generated IPCs was modest (3%) in all the three protocols. All relevant pancreatic endocrine genes, insulin, glucagon, and somatostatin, were expressed. There was a stepwise increase in insulin and c-peptide release in response to glucose challenge, but the released amounts were low when compared with those of pancreatic islets. Conclusion. The yield of functional IPCs following directed differentiation of HBM-MSCs was modest and was comparable among the three tested protocols. Protocols for directed differentiation of MSCs need further optimization in order to be clinically meaningful. To this end, addition of an extracellular matrix and/or a suitable template should be attempted.