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Cell Transplant. 2015;24(1):97-113. doi: 10.3727/096368913X674675. Epub 2013 Oct 29.

Mouse dental pulp stem cells support human umbilical cord blood-derived hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells in vitro.

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Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Graduate School of Medical Science, Kansai Medical University, Hirakata, Osaka, Japan.


It is well documented that specialized mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) constitute the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) niche in the bone marrow (BM), and these MSCs support/maintain the HSCs in an undifferentiated state. A number of studies have demonstrated that BM-derived MSCs (BM-MSCs) can support HSCs in vitro. However, it remains unclear whether nonhematopoietic tissue-derived MSC-like cells, such as dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs), have the ability to support HSCs. In this study, we prospectively isolated DPSCs from mouse mandibular incisors by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) using BM-MSC markers, such as PDGFRα and Sca-1. The PDGFRα and Sca-1 double-positive DPSCs and BM-MSCs showed similar morphologies and expression patterns of MSC markers. The ability of the DPSCs to support hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) was then analyzed by an in vitro coculture system. Moreover, their HSC-supporting activity was evaluated by in vivo xenotransplantation assays using NOD/Shi-scid/IL-2Rγc(null) (NOG) mice. Interestingly, the DPSCs supported human cord blood (CB)-derived CD34-positive (CD34(+)), as well as CD34-negative (CD34(-)), HSCs. The supporting activities of DPSCs for human CB-derived CD34(+) and CD34(-) HSCs were comparable to those of BM-MSCs. The results of the present study demonstrated, for the first time, that prospectively isolated murine PDGFRα and Sca-1 double-positive DPSCs could support primitive human CD34(+) and CD34(-) HSCs in vitro.

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