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Molecules. 2011 Dec 6;16(12):10123-33. doi: 10.3390/molecules161210123.

The dose-effect of icariin on the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of human bone mesenchymal stem cells.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Xi Jing Hospital, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an 710032, China.


Icariin had been reported as a potential agent for osteogenesis, but the dose-effect relationship needed further research to realize the clinical application of icariin. We isolated and purified human bone mesenchymal stem cells (hBMSCs) and stimulated them with different concentrations of icariin. The cytotoxicity of icariin was evaluated by the methylthiazolytetrazolium (MTT) assay method. The proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of such hBMSCs were investigated for different concentrations of icariin. We found that icariin had a dose-dependent effect on the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of hBMSCs in a suitable concentration range from 10(-9) M to 10(-6) M, but at concentrations above 10(-5) M, the cytotoxicity limited its use. The extremely low cost of icariin and its high abundance make it appealing for bone regeneration.

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