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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2011 Sep 23;413(2):353-7. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2011.08.104. Epub 2011 Aug 27.

Mesenchymal stem cell marker Stro-1 is a 75 kd endothelial antigen.

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Knuppe Molecular Urology Laboratory, Department of Urology, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143-0738, USA.


Stro-1 is the best-known mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) marker. However, previous studies have observed its expression in the endothelium. In the present study we performed immunofluorescence (IF) staining for Stro-1, using endothelial marker vWF as reference. In the liver, both proteins were expressed in the endothelium of the central veins and hepatic sinusoids. In the lung, both were expressed in the endothelium of pulmonary blood vessels, but while vWF was absent in the alveolar capillaries, Stro-1 was present. In the kidney, both were expressed in the endothelium of renal arterial branches, but while vWF was strongly expressed in the glomeruli, Stro-1 only scantly. IF staining in cultured endothelial cells also showed extensive overlaps between Stro-1 and vWF. Western blot analysis with Stro-1 antibody detected a single protein band of 75 kd in endothelial cells but not smooth muscle cells, fibroblasts, or B cells. Cancer cell lines PC3, DU145, MCF7, and K562 were also positive. Adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) expressed higher levels of Stro-1 when cultured beyond the first passage or when induced to differentiate into endothelial cells. These data, together with previous studies, indicate that Stro-1 is intrinsically an endothelial antigen, and its expression in MSC is probably an induced event.

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