International journal of molecular sciences

Human adipose-derived mesenchymal progenitor cells engraft into rabbit articular cartilage.

PMID 26023716


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are known to have the potential for articular cartilage regeneration, and are suggested for the treatment of osteoarthritis (OA). Here, we investigated whether intra-articular injection of xenogeneic human adipose-derived mesenchymal progenitor cells (haMPCs) promoted articular cartilage repair in rabbit OA model and engrafted into rabbit articular cartilage. The haMPCs were cultured in vitro, and phenotypes and differentiation characteristics of cells were evaluated. OA was induced surgically by anterior cruciate ligament transection (ACLT) and medical meniscectomy of knee joints. At six weeks following surgery, hyaluronic acid (HA) or haMPCs was injected into the knee joints, the contralateral knee served as normal control. All animals were sacrificed at the 16th week post-surgery. Assessments were carried out by macroscopic examination, hematoxylin/eosin (HE) and Safranin-O/Fast green stainings and immunohistochemistry. The data showed that haMPC treatment promoted cartilage repair. Signals of human mitochondrial can be directly detected in haMPC treated cartilage. The haMPCs expressed human leukocyte antigen I (HLA-I) but not HLA-II-DR in vivo. These results suggest that intra-articular injection of haMPCs promotes regeneration of articular cartilage in rabbit OA model, and support the notion that MPCs are transplantable between HLA-incompatible individuals.