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Int J Oral Sci. 2015 Dec 18;7(4):205-12. doi: 10.1038/ijos.2015.29.

Single CD271 marker isolates mesenchymal stem cells from human dental pulp.

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Division of Oral Biology and Medicine, School of Dentistry, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, USA.
Section of Orthodontics, School of Dentistry, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, USA.
Department of Bioengineering, Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, USA.


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are a promising tool in regenerative medicine due to their capacity to differentiate into multiple lineages. In addition to MSCs isolated from bone marrow (BMSCs), adult MSCs are isolated from craniofacial tissues including dental pulp tissues (DPs) using various stem cell surface markers. However, there has been a lack of consensus on a set of surface makers that are reproducibly effective at isolating putative multipotent dental mesenchymal stem cells (DMSCs). In this study, we used different combinations of surface markers (CD51/CD140α, CD271, and STRO-1/CD146) to isolate homogeneous populations of DMSCs from heterogeneous dental pulp cells (DPCs) obtained from DP and compared their capacity to undergo multilineage differentiation. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting revealed that 27.3% of DPCs were CD51(+)/CD140α(+), 10.6% were CD271(+), and 0.3% were STRO-1(+)/CD146(+). Under odontogenic conditions, all three subsets of isolated DMSCs exhibited differentiation capacity into odontogenic lineages. Among these isolated subsets of DMSCs, CD271(+) DMSCs demonstrated the greatest odontogenic potential. While all three combinations of surface markers in this study successfully isolated DMSCs from DPCs, the single CD271 marker presents the most effective stem cell surface marker for identification of DMSCs with high odontogenic potential. Isolated CD271(+) DMSCs could potentially be utilized for future clinical applications in dentistry and regenerative medicine.

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