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Organogenesis. 2010 Oct-Dec;6(4):197-203. doi: 10.4161/org.6.4.12393.

Human umbilical cord perivascular cells (HUCPVC): A mesenchymal cell source for dermal wound healing.

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  • 1Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto, ON Canada.

Abstract

Human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hBM-MSC) have recently been employed in the clinical treatment of challenging skin defects. We have described an MSC population that can be easily harvested from human umbilical cord perivascular tissue, human umbilical cord perivascular cells (HUCPVC), which exhibit a higher proliferative rate and frequency than hBM-MSC. Our objective was to establish whether HUCPVC could promote healing of full thickness murine skin defects, and thus find utility as a cell source for dermal repair. To this end, bilateral full thickness defects were created on the dorsum of Balb/c nude mice. Fibrin was used as a delivery vehicle for 1 x 106 PKH-67 labeled HUCPVC with contralateral controls receiving fibrin only. Epifluorescent and brightfield microscopic evaluation of the wound site was carried out at 3 and 7 days while mechanical testing of wounds was carried out at 3, 7, and 10 days. Our results show that by 3 days, marked contraction of the wound was observed in the fibrin controls whilst the HUCPVC samples exhibited neither collapse nor contraction of the defect, and the dermal repair tissue was considerably thicker and more organized. By 7 days, complete re-epithelialization of the HUCPVC wounds was observed whilst in the controls re-epithelialization was limited to the wound margins. Wound strength was significantly increased in the HUCPVC treatment group by 3 and 7 days but no statistical difference was seen at 10 days. We conclude that HUCPVCs accelerate early wound healing in full thickness skin defects and thus represent a putative source of human MSCs for use in dermal tissue engineering.

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