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Eva M. Martínez-Conesa, Enric Espel, Manuel Reina, Ricardo P. Casaroli-Marano; Characterization of Ocular Surface Epithelial and Progenitor Cell Markers in Human Adipose Stromal Cells Derived from Lipoaspirates. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(1):513-520. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.11-7550.
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The goal of this study was to characterize and compare mesenchymal stem cells from adult human adipose tissue (ADS cells) with progenitor cell lines from the human corneoscleral limbus and to analyze their potential for the expression of epithelial markers.
Stem cell markers (CD34, CD90, p63, and ABCG2) and epithelial cell markers (CK3/76, CK12, CK76, CK19, and CK1/5/10/14) were analyzed by immunostaining, flow cytometry, Western blot analysis, and PCR methods. The authors assayed adhesion and proliferation on different extracellular matrix proteins.
ADS cells expressed a set of progenitor cell markers, including p63 and ABCG2. CK12 expression in ADS cell cultures increased spontaneously and progressively by differential adhesion, which demonstrates the cells' potential and capability to acquire epithelial-like cell characteristics. The authors observed an increase in the adhesion and proliferation of ADS cells seeded onto different basement membrane extracellular matrix proteins. Laminin substrates reduced the proliferative state of ADS cells.
The expression of putative stem cell markers (CD90, ABCG2, and p63) and cytokeratins (CK12 and CK76) supports the hypothesis that ADS cells have self-renewal capacity and intrinsic plasticity that enables them to acquire some epithelial-like characteristics. Therefore, adult ADS cells could be a potential source for cell therapy in ocular surface regeneration.
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