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Open Access Sex of Muscle Stem Cells Does Not Influence Potency for Cardiac Cell Therapy

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We have previously shown that populations of skeletal muscle-derived stem cells (MDSCs) exhibit sex-based differences for skeletal muscle and bone repair, with female cells demonstrating superior engrafting abilities to males in skeletal muscle while male cells differentiating more robustly toward the osteogenic and chondrogenic lineages. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that the therapeutic capacity of MDSCs transplanted into myocardium is influenced by sex of donor MDSCs or recipient. Male and female MDSCs isolated from the skeletal muscle of 3-week-old mice were transplanted into recipient male or female dystrophin-deficient (mdx) hearts or into the hearts of male SCID mice following acute myocardial infarction. In the mdx model, no difference was seen in engraftment or blood vessel formation based on donor cell or recipient sex. In the infarction model, MDSC-transplanted hearts showed higher postinfarction angiogenesis, less myocardial scar formation, and improved cardiac function compared to vehicle controls. However, sex of donor MDSCs had no significant effects on engraftment, angiogenesis, and cardiac function. VEGF expression, a potent angiogenic factor, was similar between male and female MDSCs. Our results suggest that donor MDSC or recipient sex has no significant effect on the efficiency of MDSC-triggered myocardial engraftment or regeneration following cardiac injury. The ability of the MDSCs to improve cardiac regeneration and repair through promotion of angiogenesis without differentiation into the cardiac lineage may have contributed to the lack of sex difference observed in these models.

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Keywords: Cardiac; Cell transplantation; Sex; Stem cells

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Stem Cell Research Center, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Publication date: 2009-10-01

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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.

    Cell Transplantation is now being published by SAGE. Please visit their website for the most recent issues.

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