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What’s the Stem Cells Buzz this Week? - SCNT-hESC Endothelial Cells, Adult Prostatic Progenitors, Exosome‐educated Macrophages, and Prostate Cancer treatment with MSCs!

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The Stem Cells Portal brings you a roundup of some of the new and exciting stories in the ever-changing world of stem cells, regenerative medicine, and beyond!

Functional human Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer ESC-derived Endothelial Cells

Researchers from Konkuk University (Seoul, Republic of Korea) recently sought to discover the functional potential of human embryonic stem cells they previously derived by somatic cell nuclear transfer (hNT-ESCs). In their article, Park et al. report that endothelial cells differentiated from hNT-ESCs displayed signature endothelial characteristics in vitro, including tubule formation and uptake of acetylated low-density lipoprotein. However, they displayed lower angiogenic potential following transplantation into a mouse ischemic limb model when compared to endothelial cells differentiated from hESCs. For all the details, see STEM CELLS now!

Sox2 Marks Adult Prostatic Progenitors

The identification of defined epithelial cell populations with progenitor properties represents a critical step towards a deeper understanding of prostatic development and disease. Now, researchers led by Donald J. Vander Griend (University of Illinois at Chicago, USA) report the enrichment of Sox2 expression in the epithelial cells of the proximal prostate adjacent to the urethra. Lineage tracing of Sox2‐positive cells during prostatic development, homeostasis, and regeneration demonstrated that the Sox2 lineage self‐renews and contributes to prostatic regeneration. Furthermore, this new STEM CELLS study also reports that persisting luminal cells express Sox2 after castration, highlighting a potential role for Sox2 in cell survival and castration‐resistance.

Exosome‐educated Macrophages Promote Achilles Tendon Healing

Recent results out of the labs of Ray Vanderby and Peiman Hematti (University of Wisconsin‐Madison, USA) discovered that extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can induce macrophages into a pro-regenerative M2 immunophenotype, generating exosome‐educated macrophages (EEMs). Now the team returns with a new study in which Chamberlain et al. report how EMMs accelerated biological and functional healing of tendon injury, thereby providing a safe and easy therapeutic strategy that may have applications in other inflammatory conditions. For more information, see STEM CELLS now!

Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Prostate Cancer

As animal models have shown that systemically administered bone marrow‐derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) home to sites of primary and metastatic prostate cancer, thereby making them candidates to selectively deliver cytotoxic agents, a new trial conducted by Michael T. Schweizer (University of Washington, USA) and Samuel R. Denmeade (Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, USA) recently tested the homing of systemically infused allogeneic MSCs pre-prostatectomy in a phase I study. The results, published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine, suggested the overall safety of this approach; however, MSCs did not accumulate within prostate cancer foci, thereby providing evidence against the further development as a cell‐based therapeutic delivery strategy employing current ex vivo expansion protocols.

That’s a wrap for now! Please feel free to leave a comment and discuss the papers covered here on the Stem Cells Buzz. Happy reading!