What are Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs)?
MSCs are a unique type of cells that can differentiate themselves to become functionally specialized. They are primarily found in a growing organism and tissues where it is required to replace the dead or damaged cells.
Characteristics of isolated MSCs:
When MSC cell population is isolated in the laboratory, they must be:
- Plastic adherent (cells adhere and grow on the surface of the cell culture containers)
- Express certain determining cell surface antigens (like CD105, CD 73, CD 90 in a majority of the cells, and some rare ones like CD 45, CD 37, CD 14, CD 11b, CD 79 α, CD 19, HLA-DR)
- They must contain the property to differentiate into bone, cartilage fats in vitro.
Once isolated, these cells can be used in two different ways:
- Late implantation of MSC to repair tissues
- Implantation of MSC in disease mitigation through immunomodulation.
What is MSC Secretome?
Recently, scientists have discovered that the repair mechanism of MSCs lies in the biomolecules secreted by them. These secreted factors are called secretome, that is, a set of proteins expressed by the organism which gets secreted to extracellular space. These are signalling molecules regulating the growth and proliferation of cells, along with modifying the immune response to such actively proliferating cells.
For simpler understanding: MSC releases secretome – secretome contains extracellular vesicles, along with various other growth factors and proteins – EVs can be of three types: exosomes, microvesicles and apoptotic bodies.Read More
1. Advantages of using MSC Secretome in research:
MSC secretome includes both soluble factors and factors released in extracellular vesicles (EVs) or MSC-derived extracellular vesicles (MSC-EVs). As understandable, EVs are cell-derived membrane-bound vesicles containing our desired biomolecules. Therefore, these vesicles have not only improved the therapeutic outcomes but also enabled bioengineering and scaling of release signals to specific dosages. They are easy to work with because of their small size, relative mobility and stable mechanism to deliver biomolecules to the target.
2. Composition of MSC Secretome
The MSC secretome consists of many soluble cell signalling molecules, growth factors, cytokines, anti-inflammatory factors and molecules enclosed within EVs, like, RNA, DNA and bioactive lipids and proteins, that capable of triggering a variety of biological responses in an organism.
MSC secretome components can be recovered from the expended medium or conditioned medium during the culture period after centrifugation and removal of cell debris. This implies that the secretions by MSCs, which are of immense importance, can be found in the supernatant.
So far we have understood what MSCs and MSC secretomes are. In case you want to get an overview of how they are bioprocessed so that they can be used for scientific and therapeutic applications, carry on reading to the next page.