Various cytokines produced by bone marrow cells can protect adult cardiomyocytes against apoptosis. Thus, we investigated the feasibility of implanting adult cardiomyocytes in combination with bone marrow cells for myocardial repair. Ventricular cardiomyocytes were isolated from adult rats and cocultured with bone marrow cells. Using a rat model of doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy, we injected 6 × 105 adult cardiomyocytes, 3 × 107 bone marrow cells, or both into damaged hearts, for myocardial repair. Coculture of the cardiomyocytes with the bone marrow cells enhanced the expression of integrin-1D and focal adhesion kinase in cardiomyocytes, resulting in increased survival and decreased apoptosis of the cardiomyocytes after 7 days of culture. Compared with the baseline levels, cardiac function was preserved by the implantation of bone marrow cells alone and by the implantation of cardiomyocytes in combination with bone marrow cells, but it was decreased significantly 28 days after the implantation of cardiomyocytes alone. Furthermore, apoptosis of the host cardiomyocytes was decreased significantly after the implantation of bone marrow cells alone, or in combination with cardiomyocytes, compared with that after the implantation of cardiomyocytes alone (p < 0.01). Interestingly, the implantation of adult cardiomyocytes in combination with bone marrow cells resulted in a dramatic increase in the survival of donor cardiomyocytes, and induced the myogenic differentiation of donor bone marrow stem cells. Our findings indicate that cardiomyocytes and bone marrow cells can assist and compliment each other; thus, the implantation of adult cardiomyocytes in combination with bone marrow cells shows promise as a feasible new strategy for myocardial repair.
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.