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Hematol J. 2003;4(2):92-6.

Mesenchymal stem cell: use and perspectives.

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Laboratory for Stem Cell Studies, Bambino Gesù Research Hospital, Rome, Italy.


Studies on hematopoiesis have focused on the function and composition of human bone marrow stroma. Stroma function gives hematopoietic stem cells the microenvironment appropriate for self-renewal and/or prompt differentiation into hematopoietic progenitor cells, then into terminal specialized cells. Human bone marrow stroma has been dissected into hematopoietic and nonhematopoietic components. The former includes hematopoietic-derived cells, mainly macrophages, while the latter, still poorly characterized, is composed mainly of endothelial and mesenchymal stem cells and their derivatives (adipocytes, chondrocytes, cells of the osteogenic lineage). Isolation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells has made available a population of adherent cells, belonging to the non-hematopoietic stroma, which are morphologically and phenotypically homogeneous. This review will focus on: (i) definition of bone marrow stroma and mesenchymal stem cells; (ii) methods of mesenchymal stem cell isolation, morphological and phenotypic characterization; (iii) mesenchymal stem cell functional and differentiation properties and (iv) therapeutic applications of mesenchymal stem cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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