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J Geriatr Cardiol. 2012 Jun;9(2):166-71. doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1263.2011.12091.

Comparison of human amniotic fluid-derived and umbilical cord Wharton's Jelly-derived mesenchymal stromal cells: Characterization and myocardial differentiation capacity.

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Department of Cardiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chinese PLA General Hospital, 51 Fucheng Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100048, China.



To compare the characterization and myocardial differentiation capacity of amniotic fluid-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (AF MSCs) and umbilical cord Wharton's Jelly-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (WJ MSCs).


The human AF MSCs were cultured from amniotic fluid samples obtained by amniocentesis. The umbilical cord WJ MSCs were obtained from Wharton's Jelly of umbilical cords of infants delivered full-term by normal labor. The morphology, growth curves, and analyses by flow cytometry of cell surface markers were compared between the two types of cells. Myocardial genes (GATA-4, c-TnT, α-actin, and Cx43) were detected by real-time PCR and the corresponding protein expressions were detected by Western blot analysis after myocardial induced in AF MSCs and WJ MSCs.


Our findings revealed AF MSCs and WJ MSCs shared similar morphological characteristics of the fibroblastoid shape. The AF MSCs were easily obtained than the WJ MSCs and had a shorter time to reach adherence of 2.7 ± 1.6 days to WJ MSCs of 6.5 ± 1.8 days. The growth curves by MTT cytotoxic assay showed the AF MSCs had a similar proliferative capacity at passage 5 and passage 10. However, the proliferative capacities of WJ MSCs were decreased at 5 passage relative to 10 passage. Both AF stem cells and WJ stem cells had the characteristics of mesenchymal stromal cells with some characteristics of embryonic stem cells. They express CD29 and CD105, but not CD34. They were positive for Class I major histocompatibility (MHC I) antigens (HLA-ABC), and were negative, or mildly positive, for MHC Class II (HLA-DR) antigen. Oct-4 was positive in all the two cells types. Both AF MSCs and WJ MSCs could differentiate along myocardium. The differentiation capacities were detected by the expression of GATA-4, c-TnT, α-actin, Cx43 after myocardial induction.


Both AF MSCs and WJ MSCs have the potential clinical application for myogenesis in cardiac regenerative therapy.


Human amniotic fluid-derived cells; Mesenchymal stromal cells; Myocardial differentiation; Wharton's Jelly-derived cells

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