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Stem Cells International
Volume 2016, Article ID 6737345, 19 pages
Review Article

Adipose-Derived Stem Cells for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Applications

1School of Engineering, University of British Columbia, Kelowna, BC, Canada V1V 1V7
2West China Hospital, West China Medical School, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China
3Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Ulsan, Ulsan 680-749, Republic of Korea

Received 16 October 2015; Revised 2 January 2016; Accepted 3 January 2016

Academic Editor: Giuseppe A. Ferraro

Copyright © 2016 Ru Dai 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.


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.