Send to

Choose Destination
Stem Cells Transl Med. 2018 Nov;7(11):829-838. doi: 10.1002/sctm.18-0009. Epub 2018 Sep 20.

Secretome of Undifferentiated Neural Progenitor Cells Induces Histological and Motor Improvements in a Rat Model of Parkinson's Disease.

Author information

Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), School of Medicine, University of Minho, Campus de Gualtar, Braga, Portugal.
ICVS/3B's - PT Government Associate Laboratory, Guimarães, Portugal.
Department of Life Sciences, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal.
CNC - Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal.
Pharmaceutical Production Research Facility, Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.


Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative movement disorder that results from the death of dopamine (DA) neurons. Over recent years, differentiated or undifferentiated neural stem cells (NSCs) transplantation has been widely used as a means of cell replacement therapy. However, compelling evidence has brought attention to the array of bioactive molecules produced by stem cells, defined as secretome. As described in the literature, other cell populations have a high-neurotrophic activity, but little is known about NSCs. Moreover, the exploration of the stem cell secretome is only in its initial stages, particularly as applied to neurodegenerative diseases. Thus, we have characterized the secretome of human neural progenitor cells (hNPCs) through proteomic analysis and investigated its effects in a 6-hydroxidopamine (6-OHDA) rat model of PD in comparison with undifferentiated hNPCs transplantation. Results revealed that the injection of hNPCs secretome potentiated the histological recovery of DA neurons when compared to the untreated group 6-OHDA and those transplanted with cells (hNPCs), thereby supporting the functional motor amelioration of 6-OHDA PD animals. Additionally, hNPCs secretome proteomic characterization has revealed that these cells have the capacity to secrete a wide range of important molecules with neuroregulatory actions, which are most likely support the effects observed. Overall, we have concluded that the use of hNPCs secretome partially modulate DA neurons cell survival and ameliorate PD animals' motor deficits, disclosing improved results when compared to cell transplantation approaches, indicating that the secretome itself could represent a route for new therapeutic options for PD regenerative medicine. Stem Cells Translational Medicine 2018;7:829-838.


Dopaminergic neurons; Human neural progenitor cells; Parkinson's disease; Secretome

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center