Long-Term Survival and Bipotent Terminal Differentiation of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells (hMSC) in Combination With a Commercially Available Three-Dimensional Collagen Scaffold
Abstract:Researchers working in the field of tissue engineering ideally combine autologous cells and biocompatible scaffolds to replace defect tissues/organs. Due to their differentiation capacity, mesenchym-derived stem cells, such as human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC), are a promising autologous cell source for the treatment of human diseases. As natural precursors for mesenchymal tissues, hMSC are particularly suitable for bone, cartilage, and adipose tissue replacement. In this study a detailed histological and ultrastructural analysis of long-term cultured and terminally differentiated hMSC on 3D collagen scaffolds was performed. Standardized 2D differentiation protocols for hMSC into adipocytes and osteoblasts were adapted for long-term 3D in vitro cultures in porous collagen matrices. After a 50-day culture period, large numbers of mature adipocytes and osteoblasts were clearly identifiable within the scaffolds. The adipocytes exhibited membrane free lipid vacuoles. The osteoblasts were arranged in close association with hydroxyapatite crystals, which were deposited on the surrounding fibers. The collagen matrix was remodeled and adopted a contracted and curved form. Human MSC survive long-term culture within these scaffolds and could be terminally differentiated into adipocytes and osteoblasts. Thus, the combination of hMSC and this particular collagen scaffold is a possible candidate for bone and adipose tissue replacement strategies.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: August 1, 2008
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