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Neural Differentiation and Incorporation of Bone Marrow-Derived Multipotent Adult Progenitor Cells After Single Cell Transplantation Into Blastocyst Stage Mouse Embryos

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Previously we reported the characterization of multipotent adult progenitor cells (MAPCs) isolated from the bone marrow of rodents. In that study, single murine MAPCs derived from ROSA-26, β-galactosidase (β-Gal)-positive transgenic mice were injected into E3.5 C57/Bl6 mouse blastocysts. The resultant chimeric blastocysts were then implanted into pseudopregnant females and were allowed to develop naturally through birth and into adulthood. Chimeric mice were sacrificed 6 to 20 weeks after birth, and were processed for histological analysis. β-Galactosidase activity was identified in all organs and tissues examined, and tissue-specific differentiation and engraftment was confirmed by colabeling with antibodies that recognize β-Gal and tissue-specific markers. In the present study we have examined neural engraftment derived from the clonal expansion of a single MAPC during rodent development, and characterized the neural phenotype of MAPCs in the resultant chimeric animals. Donor cell-derived β-Gal activity was evident throughout the brain. Double and triple immunofluorescent labeling studies revealed MAPC-derived neurons (NeuN/β-Gal) and astrocytes (GFAP/β-Gal) in the cortex, striatum, medial septal nucleus, hippocampus, cerebellum, substantia nigra, and thalamus. More specifically, donor-derived neurons contributed to each of the cellular layers of the cortex; the pyramidal and granule cell layers, as well as the hilus, of the hippocampus; Purkinje and granule cell layers in the cerebellum; and GABAergic cells in the caudate and putamen. This study characterizes the potential for MAPCs to differentiate into specific neuronal and glial phenotypes, and to integrate normally during development, after implantation into blastocysts, and provides additional evidence that MAPCs exhibit properties similar to embryonic stem cells.

Keywords: Blastocyst transplantation; Neural differentiation; Plasticity; ROSA-26; Stem cell; β-Galactosidase

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: *Department of Neurosurgery, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455 2: ‡Stem Cell Institute, Division of Hematology, Oncology and Transplantation, Department of Medicine, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455 3: §Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455

Publication date: January 1, 2003

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

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