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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(3), 374; doi:10.3390/ijms17030374

Mesenchymal Stem Cells Increase Neo-Angiogenesis and Albumin Production in a Liver Tissue-Engineered Engraftment

1
Department of General Surgery and Odontoiatrics, Liver Transplant Unit, University Hospital of Verona, P.le Aristide Stefani 1, Verona 37126, Italy
2
Nanomedicine Lab, Institute of Inflammation and Repair, Faculty of Medical & Human Sciences, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PT, UK
3
Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Padova, Viale Giuseppe Colombo, 3, Padova 35131, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 November 2015 / Revised: 12 February 2016 / Accepted: 1 March 2016 / Published: 12 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Cell Transplantation)
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Abstract

The construction of a three-dimensional (3D) liver tissue is limited by many factors; one of them is the lack of vascularization inside the tissue-engineered construct. An engineered liver pocket-scaffold able to increase neo-angiogenesis in vivo could be a solution to overcome these limitations. In this work, a hyaluronan (HA)-based scaffold enriched with human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) and rat hepatocytes was pre-conditioned in a bioreactor system, then implanted into the liver of rats. Angiogenesis and hepatocyte metabolic functions were monitored. The formation of a de novo vascular network within the HA-based scaffold, as well as an improvement in albumin production by the implanted hepatocytes, were detected. The presence of hMSCs in the HA-scaffold increased the concentration of growth factors promoting angiogenesis inside the graft. This event ensured a high blood vessel density, coupled with a support to metabolic functions of hepatocytes. All together, these results highlight the important role played by stem cells in liver tissue-engineered engraftment. View Full-Text
Keywords: mesenchymal stem cell; hepatocyte; angiogenesis; hyaluronan-based scaffold; engineered liver tissue mesenchymal stem cell; hepatocyte; angiogenesis; hyaluronan-based scaffold; engineered liver tissue
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Carraro, A.; Buggio, M.; Gardin, C.; Tedeschi, U.; Ferroni, L.; Zavan, B. Mesenchymal Stem Cells Increase Neo-Angiogenesis and Albumin Production in a Liver Tissue-Engineered Engraftment. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 374.

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