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Regen Med Res. 2014 Apr 11;2(1):7. doi: 10.1186/2050-490X-2-7. eCollection 2014 Dec.

Cell-based therapy in lung regenerative medicine.

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Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 USA.
Department of Biology, College of Arts & Sciences, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC 27412 USA.


Chronic lung diseases are becoming a leading cause of death worldwide. There are few effective treatments for those patients and less choices to prevent the exacerbation or even reverse the progress of the diseases. Over the past decade, cell-based therapies using stem cells to regenerate lung tissue have experienced a rapid growth in a variety of animal models for distinct lung diseases. This novel approach offers great promise for the treatment of several devastating and incurable lung diseases, including emphysema, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension, and the acute respiratory distress syndrome. In this review, we provide a concise summary of the current knowledge on the attributes of endogenous lung epithelial stem/progenitor cells (EpiSPCs), mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) in both animal models and translational studies. We also describe the promise and challenges of tissue bioengineering in lung regenerative medicine. The therapeutic potential of MSCs is further discussed in IPF and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD).


Endothelial progenitor cells; Lung epithelial stem/progenitor cells; Lung injury; Lung regenerative medicine; Mesenchymal stem cells; Stem cells; Therapy

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