Mesenchymal stem cell characteristics of dental pulp and periodontal ligament stem cells after in vivo transplantation.

PMID 24824581


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) isolated from human postnatal dental pulp and periodontal ligament (PDL) tissues can give rise to multilineage differentiation in vitro and generate related dental tissues in vivo. However, the cell properties of human dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) and PDL stem cells (PDLSCs) after in vivo implantation remain largely unidentified. In this study, cells were re-isolated from in vivo-generated dental pulp-like and PDL-like tissues (termed re-DPCs and re-PDLCs, respectively) as a result of ectopic transplantation of human DPSC and PDLSC sheets. The cell characteristics in terms of colony-forming ability, cell surface antigens and multi-differentiation potentials were all evaluated before and after implantation. It was found that re-DPCs and re-PDLCs were of human and mesenchymal origin and positive for MSC markers such as STRO-1, CD146, CD29, CD90 and CD105; and, to some extent, re-DPCs could maintain their colony forming abilities. Moreover, both cell types were able to form mineral deposits and differentiate into adipocytes and chondrocytes; however, quantitative analysis and related gene expression determination showed that the osteo-/chondro-differentiation capabilities of re-DPCs and re-PDLCs were significantly reduced compared to those of DPSCs and PDLSCs, respectively (P < 0.05); re-PDLCs showed a greater reduction potential than re-DPCs. We conclude that DPSCs and PDLSCs may maintain their MSC characteristics after in vivo implantation and, compared to PDLSCs, DPSCs appear much more stable under in vivo conditions. These findings provide additional cellular and molecular evidence that supports expanding the use of dental tissue-derived stem cells in cell therapy and tissue engineering.