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J Orthop Res. 2006 Jan;24(1):21-8.

Nonadherent cell population of human marrow culture is a complementary source of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).

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Department of Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery, Institute of Medical Research, Queen's University Belfast, Musgrave Park Hospital, Belfast BT9 7JB, United Kingdom.


To obtain enough quantity of osteogenic cells is a challenge for successful cell therapy in bone defect treatment, and cell numbers were usually achieved by culturing bone marrow cells in a relatively long duration. This study reports a simple and cost-effective method to enhance the number of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) by collecting and replating the nonadherent cell population of marrow MSCs culture. Bone marrow MSCs were isolated from 11 patients, cultured at a density of 1 x 10(5)/cm(2) to 1 x 10(6)/cm(2) in flasks. For the first three times of media change, the floating cells were centrifuged and replated in separate flasks. The total number of cells in both the primary and replating flasks were counted at day 21. Cell proliferation rate, potentials for osteogenic, chondrognenic, and adipogenic differentiation were examined in both cell types in vitro. In vivo osteogenic potentials of the cells were also tested in mice implantation model. The results showed that MSCs derived from nonadherent cell population of marrow cell cultures have similar cell proliferation and differentiation potentials as the originally attached MSCs in vitro. When implanted with hydroxyapatite/tricalcium phosphate (HA-TCP) materials subcutaneously in serve combined immune deficiency (SCID) mice, newly formed bony tissues were found in both cell type groups with osteocalcin expression. We have obtained 36.6% (20.70%-44.97%) more MSCs in the same culture period when the nonadherent cell populations were collected. The findings confirmed that the nonadherent cell population in the bone marrow culture is a complementary source of MSCs, collecting these cells is a simple and cost-effective way to increase MSCs numbers and reduce the time required for culturing MSCs for clinical applications.

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