Author(s): Choi YH, Kurtz A, Stamm C
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Abstract Despite refinements of medical and surgical therapies, heart failure remains a fatal disease. Myocardial infarction is the most common cause of heart failure, and only palliative measures are available to relieve symptoms and prolong the patient's life span. Because mammalian cardiomyocytes irreversibly exit the cell cycle at about the time of birth, the heart has traditionally been considered to lack any regenerative capacity. This paradigm, however, is currently shifting, and the cellular composition of the myocardium is being targeted by various regeneration strategies. Adult progenitor and stem cell treatment of diseased human myocardium has been carried out for more than 10 years (Menasche et al., 2001; Stamm et al., 2003), and it has become clear that, in humans, the regenerative capacity of hematopoietic stem cells and endothelial progenitor cells, despite potent proangiogenic effects, is limited (Stamm et al., 2009). More recently, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and related cell types are being evaluated in preclinical models of heart disease as well as in clinical trials (see Published Clinical Trials, below). MSCs have the capacity to self-renew and to differentiate into lineages that normally originate from the embryonic mesenchyme (connective tissues, blood vessels, blood-related organs) (Caplan, 1991; Prockop, 1997; Pittenger et al., 1999). The current definition of MSCs includes plastic adherence in cell culture, specific surface antigen expression (CD105(+)/CD90(+)/CD73(+), CD34(-)/CD45(-)/CD11b(-) or CD14(-)/CD19(-) or CD79α(-)/HLA-DR1(-)), and multilineage in vitro differentiation potential (osteogenic, chondrogenic, and adipogenic) (Dominici et al., 2006 ). If those criteria are not met completely, the term "mesenchymal stromal cells" should be used for marrow-derived adherent cells, or other terms for MSC-like cells of different origin. For the purpose of this review, MSCs and related cells are discussed in general, and cell type-specific properties are indicated when appropriate. We first summarize the preclinical data on MSCs in models of heart disease, and then appraise the clinical experience with MSCs for cardiac cell therapy.
This article was published in Hum Gene Ther
and referenced in Journal of Stem Cell Research & Therapy