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Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2010 Sep 30;62(12):1156-66. doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2010.08.010. Epub 2010 Sep 7.

Mesenchymal stem cells as therapeutics and vehicles for gene and drug delivery.

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Department of Animal Biotechnology, University of Nevada, Reno, 89557-0104, USA.


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) possess a set of several fairly unique properties which make them ideally suited both for cellular therapies/regenerative medicine, and as vehicles for gene and drug delivery. These include: 1) relative ease of isolation; 2) the ability to differentiate into a wide variety of seemingly functional cell types of both mesenchymal and non-mesenchymal origin; 3) the ability to be extensively expanded in culture without a loss of differentiative capacity; 4) they are not only hypoimmunogenic, but they produce immunosuppression upon transplantation; 5) their pronounced anti-inflammatory properties; and 6) their ability to home to damaged tissues, tumors, and metastases following in vivo administration. In this review, we summarize the latest research in the use of mesenchymal stem cells in regenerative medicine, as immunomodulatory/anti-inflammatory agents, and as vehicles for transferring both therapeutic genes in genetic disease and genes designed to destroy malignant cells.

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