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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2001 Jun 8;284(2):411-8.

BMP-6 enhances chondrogenesis in a subpopulation of human marrow stromal cells.

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  • 1Center for Gene Therapy, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112, USA.


Marrow stromal cells (MSCs) can differentiate into several mesenchymal lineages. MSCs were recently shown to form cartilage in micromass cultures with serum-free medium containing TGF-beta and dexamethasone. Here we found that addition of BMP-6 increased the weight of the pellets about 10-fold and they stained more extensively for proteoglycans. mRNAs for type II procollagen and type X collagen were detected at 1 week and the levels were increased at 3 weeks. We also compared two subpopulation of cultures of MSCs: Small and rapidly self-renewing cells (RS cells) and the large, more mature and slowly replicating cells (mMSCs). The cartilage pellets prepared from cultures enriched for RS cells were about 2.5-fold larger, stained more extensively for proteoglycans, and had levels of mRNA for type II procollagen that were 1.6-fold higher. Also, RS cells retained more of their chondrogenic potential as the cells were passaged.

Copyright 2001 Academic Press.

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