Transdifferentiation of autologous bone marrow cells on a collagen-poly(ε-caprolactone) scaffold for tissue engineering in complete lack of native urothelium

J. Zhao, S. Zeiai, Å. Ekblad, A. Nordenskjöld, J. Hilborn, C. Götherström, M. Fossum

Abstract

Urological reconstructive surgery is sometimes hampered by a lack of tissue. In some cases, autologous urothelial cells (UCs) are not available for cell expansion and ordinary tissue engineering. In these cases, we wanted to explore whether autologous mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from bone marrow could be used to create urological transplants. MSCs from human bone marrow were cultured in vitro with medium conditioned by normal human UCs or by indirect co-culturing in culture well inserts. Changes in gene expression, protein expression and cell morphology were studied after two weeks using western blot, RT-PCR and immune staining. Cells cultured in standard epithelial growth medium served as controls. Bone marrow MSCs changed their phenotype with respect to growth characteristics and cell morphology, as well as gene and protein expression, to a UC lineage in both culture methods, but not in controls. Urothelial differentiation was also accomplished in human bone marrow MSCs seeded on a three-dimensional poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL)–collagen construct. Human MSCs could easily be harvested by bone marrow aspiration and expanded and differentiated into urothelium. Differentiation could take place on a three-dimensional hybrid PCL-reinforced collagen-based scaffold for creation of a tissue-engineered autologous transplant for urological reconstructive surgery.

  • Received March 5, 2014.
  • Accepted April 9, 2014.
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