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Curr Stem Cell Res Ther. 2017;12(6):513-521. doi: 10.2174/1574888X12666170321111211.

Adipose Tissue-Derived Pericytes for Cartilage Tissue Engineering.

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Institute of Orthopaedics, Chinese PLA General Hospital; Beijing Key Lab of Regenerative Medicine in Orthopaedics; Key Laboratory of Musculoskeletal Trauma & War Injuries, PLA; 28 Fuxing Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100853, China.
Department of Anesthesia & Surgery Center, Chinese PLA General Hospital, 28 Fuxing Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100853, China.
Institute of Orthopaedics, Hebei medical University, Shijiazhuang, Hebei Province, China.
Institute of Orthopaedics, Jiamusi University, 148 Xuefu Road, Jiamusi 154007.Heilongjiang Province, China.
School of Medicine, Nankai University, 94 Weijin Road, Tianjin 300071, China.
Institute of Orthopaedics, Chinese PLA General Hospital, 28 Fuxing Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100853, China.
Institute of Orthopaedics, First Affiliated Hospital of Jiamusi University, Jiamusi 154003,Heilongjiang Province, China.



Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) represent a promising alternative source for cartilage tissue engineering. However, MSC culture is labor-intensive, so these cells cannot be applied immediately to regenerate cartilage for clinical purposes. Risks during the ex vivo expansion of MSCs, such as infection and immunogenicity, can be a bottleneck in their use in clinical tissue engineering. As a novel stem cell source, pericytes are generally considered to be the origin of MSCs. Pericytes do not have to undergo time-consuming ex vivo expansion because they are uncultured cells. Adipose tissue is another optimal stem cell reservoir. Because adipose tissue is well vascularized, a considerable number of pericytes are located around blood vessels in this accessible and dispensable tissue, and autologous pericytes can be applied immediately for cartilage regeneration.


Thus, we suggest that adipose tissue-derived pericytes are promising seed cells for cartilage regeneration.


Many studies have been performed to develop isolation methods for the adipose tissuederived stromal vascular fraction (AT-SVF) using lipoaspiration and sorting pericytes from AT-SVF. These methods are useful for sorting a large number of viable pericytes for clinical therapy after being combined with automatic isolation using an SVF device and automatic magnetic-activated cell sorting. These tools should help to develop one-step surgery for repairing cartilage damage. However, the use of adipose tissue-derived pericytes as a cell source for cartilage tissue engineering has not drawn sufficient attention and preclinical studies are needed to improve cell purity, to increase sorting efficiency, and to assess safety issues of clinical applications.


CD146; Pericytes; adipose tissue-derived stromal vascular fraction (AT-SVF); adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs); cartilage tissue engineering; chondrogenic progenitor cells (CPCs); magnetic- activated cell sorting (MACS)

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