Doctor of Philosophy, University Of Pune (2010)
Renee Reijo Pera, Postdoctoral Faculty Sponsor
Smooth muscle cells (SMCs) and endothelial cells (ECs) are typically derived separately, with low efficiencies, from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). The concurrent generation of these cell types might lead to potential applications in regenerative medicine to model, elucidate, and eventually treat vascular diseases. Here we report a robust two-step protocol that can be used to simultaneously generate large numbers of functional SMCs and ECs from a common proliferative vascular progenitor population via a two-dimensional culture system. We show here that coculturing hPSCs with OP9 cells in media supplemented with vascular endothelial growth factor, basic fibroblast growth factor, and bone morphogenetic protein 4 yields a higher percentage of CD31(+)CD34(+) cells on day 8 of differentiation. Upon exposure to endothelial differentiation media and SM differentiation media, these vascular progenitors were able to differentiate and mature into functional endothelial cells and smooth muscle cells, respectively. Furthermore, we were able to expand the intermediate population more than a billionfold to generate sufficient numbers of ECs and SMCs in parallel for potential therapeutic transplantations.
View details for DOI 10.5966/sctm.2013-0124
View details for PubMedID 24311701
We aimed to derive induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines from vaginal fibroblasts from older women with pelvic organ prolapse. We examined the effect of donor age on iPSCs and on the cells redifferentiated from these iPSCs. Vaginal fibroblasts were isolated from younger and older subjects for reprogramming. iPSCs were generated simultaneously using an excisable polycistronic lentiviral vector expressing Oct4, Klf4, Sox2, and cMyc. The pluripotent markers of iPSCs were confirmed by immunocytochemistry and quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Spectral karyotyping was performed. The ability of the iPSCs to differentiate into three germ layers was confirmed by embryoid body and teratoma formation. Senescence marker (p21, p53, and Bax) expressions were determined by qRT-PCR and Western blot. The iPSCs were redifferentiated to fibroblasts and were evaluated with senescence-associated β-galactosidase (SA) activity and mitotic index using time-lapse dark-field microscopy. iPSCs derived from both the younger and older subjects expressed pluripotency markers and showed normal karyotype and positive teratoma assays. There was no significant difference in expression of senescence and apoptosis markers (p21, p53, and Bax) in iPSCs derived from the younger subject compared with the older subject. Furthermore, fibroblasts redifferentiated from these iPSCs did not differ in SA activity or mitotic index. We report successful derivation of iPSCs from women with pelvic organ prolapse. Older age did not interfere with successful reprogramming. Donor age differences were not observed in these iPSCs using standard senescence markers, and donor age did not appear to affect cell mitotic activity in fibroblasts redifferentiated from iPSCs.
View details for DOI 10.5966/sctm.2012-0092
View details for PubMedID 23341439
The scarcity of human islets for transplantation remains a major limitation of cell replacement therapy for diabetes. Bone marrow-derived progenitor cells are of interest because they can be isolated, expanded and offered for such therapy under autologous/allogeneic settings.We characterized and compared human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal cells (hBMC) obtained from (second trimester), young (1-24 years) and adult (34-81 years) donors. We propose a novel protocol that involves assessment of paracrine factors from regenerating pancreas in differentiation and maturation of hBMC into endocrine pancreatic lineage in vivo.We observed that donor age was inversely related to growth potential of hBMC. Following in vitro expansion and exposure to specific growth factors involved in pancreatic development, hBMC migrated and formed islet-like cell aggregates (ICA). ICA show increased abundance of pancreatic transcription factors (Ngn3, Brn4, Nkx6.1, Pax6 and Isl1). Although efficient differentiation was not achieved in vitro, we observed significant maturation and secretion of human c-peptide (insulin) upon transplantation into pancreactomized and Streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic mice. Transplanted ICA responded to glucose and maintained normoglycemia in diabetic mice.Our data demonstrate that hBMC have tremendous in vitro expansion potential and can be differentiated into multiple lineages, including the endocrine pancreatic lineage. Paracrine factors secreted from regenerating pancreas help in efficient differentiation and maturation of hBMC, possibly via recruiting chromatin modulators, to generate glucose-responsive insulin-secreting cells.
View details for DOI 10.3109/14653249.2010.523108
View details for Web of Science ID 000287313200004
View details for PubMedID 21039304
Glomerular parietal epithelial cells (GPECs) are known to revert to embryonic phenotype in response to renal injury. However, the mechanism of de-differentiation in GPECs and the underlying cellular processes are not fully understood. In the present study, we show that cultured GPECs of adult murine kidney undergo epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) to generate cells, which express CD24, CD44 and CD29 surface antigens. Characterization by qRT-PCR and immunostaining of these clonogenic cells demonstrate that they exhibit metastable phenotype with co-expression of both epithelial (cytokeratin-18) and mesenchymal (vimentin) markers. Transcript analysis by qRT-PCR revealed high expression of metanephric mesenchymal (Pax-2, WT-1, Six-1, Eya-1, GDNF) and uteric bud (Hoxb-7, C-Ret) genes in these cells, indicating their bipotent progenitor status. Incubation of GPECs with EMT blocker Prostaglandin E2, resulted in low expression of renal progenitor markers reflecting the correlation between EMT and acquired stemness in these cells. Additional in vitro renal commitment assays confirmed their functional staminality. When injected into E13.5 kidney rudiments, the cells incorporated into the developing kidney primordia and co-culture with E13.5 spinal cord resulted in branching and tubulogenesis in these cells. When implanted under renal capsule of unilaterally nephrectomized mice, these cells differentiated into immature glomeruli and vascular ducts. Our study demonstrates that EMT plays a major role in imparting plasticity to terminally differentiated GPECs by producing metastable cells with traits of kidney progenitors. The present study would improve our understanding on epithelial cell plasticity, furthering our knowledge of its role in renal repair and regeneration.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2009.00937.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000287749000019
View details for PubMedID 19840197
A simple and convenient one step room temperature method is described for the synthesis of bovine serum albumin (BSA) capped gold and silver nanoparticles. BSA reduces silver ions to silver nanoparticles but does not directly reduce gold ions to gold nanoparticles at room temperature and varying pH conditions. However, when silver and gold ions are simultaneously added to BSA, silver ions get reduced to metallic silver first and these in turn reduce gold ions to gold nanoparticles through a galvanic exchange reaction. The so synthesized silver and gold nanoparticles are easily water dispersible and can withstand addition of salt even at high concentrations. It is shown that the capped protein retains its secondary structure and the helicity to a large extent on the nanoparticles surface and that the protein capping makes the nanoparticles cytocompatible.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2009.05.029
View details for Web of Science ID 000269598900010
View details for PubMedID 19570660
The success of cell replacement therapy for diabetes depends on the availability and generation of an adequate number of islets, preferably from an autologous origin. Stem cells are now being probed for the generation of physiologically competent, insulin-producing cells. In this investigation, we explored the potential of adipose tissue-derived stem cells (ASCs) to differentiate into pancreatic hormone-expressing islet-like cell aggregates (ICAs). We initiated ASC culture from epididymal fat pads of Swiss albino mice to obtain mesenchymal cells, murine epididymal (mE)-ASCs. Subsequent single-cell cloning resulted in a homogeneous cell population with a CD29(+)CD44(+)Sca-1(+) surface antigen expression profile. We formulated a 10-day differentiation protocol to generate insulin-expressing ICAs from mE-ASCs by progressively changing the differentiation cocktail on day 1, day 3, and day 5. Our stage-specific approach successfully differentiated mesodermic mE-ASCs into definitive endoderm (cells expressing Sox17, Foxa2, GATA-4, and cytokeratin [CK]-19), then into pancreatic endoderm (cells expressing pancreatic and duodenal homeobox [PDX]-1, Ngn3, NeuroD, Pax4, and glucose transporter 2), and finally into cells expressing pancreatic hormones (insulin, glucagon, somatostatin). Fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis showed that day 5 ICAs contained 64.84% +/- 7.03% PDX-1(+) cells, and in day 10 mature ICAs, 48.17% +/- 3% of cells expressed C-peptide. Day 10 ICAs released C-peptide in a glucose-dependent manner, exhibiting in vitro functionality. Electron microscopy of day 10 ICAs revealed the presence of numerous secretory granules within the cell cytoplasm. Calcium alginate-encapsulated day 10 ICAs (1,000-1,200), when transplanted i.p. into streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice, restored normoglycemia within 2 weeks. The data presented here demonstrate the feasibility of using ASCs as a source of autologous stem cells to differentiate into the pancreatic lineage.
View details for DOI 10.1002/stem.117
View details for Web of Science ID 000270050900025
View details for PubMedID 19544426
Cellular microenvironment is known to play a critical role in the maintenance of human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs). It was uncertain whether BM-MSCs obtained from a 'diabetic milieu' (dBM-MSCs) offer the same regenerative potential as those obtained from healthy (non-diabetic) individuals (hBM-MSCs). To investigate the effect of diabetic microenvironment on human BM-MSCs, we isolated and characterized these cells from diabetic patients (dBM-MSCs). We found that dBM-MSCs expressed mesenchymal markers such as vimentin, smooth muscle actin, nestin, fibronectin, CD29, CD44, CD73, CD90, and CD105. These cells also exhibited multilineage differentiation potential, as evident from the generation of adipocytes, osteocytes, and chondrocytes when exposed to lineage specific differentiation media. Although the cells were similar to hBM-MSCs, 6% (3/54) of dBM-MSCs expressed proinsulin/C-peptide. Emanating from the diabetic microenvironmental milieu, we analyzed whether in vitro reprogramming could afford the maturation of the islet-like clusters (ICAs) derived from dBM-MSCs. Upon mimicking the diabetic hyperglycemic niche and the supplementation of fetal pancreatic extract, to differentiate dBM-MSCs into pancreatic lineage in vitro, we observed rapid differentiation and maturation of dBM-MSCs into islet-like cell aggregates. Thus, our study demonstrated that diabetic hyperglycemic microenvironmental milieu plays a major role in inducing the differentiation of human BM-MSCs in vivo and in vitro.
View details for DOI 10.1900/RDS.2009.6.260
View details for PubMedID 20043038
The uterine endometrium of placental mammals in general and human in particular is a highly dynamic, proliferative and regenerative tissue. It undergoes cycles of growth and regression during each menstrual cycle with a growing capacity from 0.5-1mm in the proliferative phase to 5-7 mm during the secretory (leutal) phase. These phases are characterized by cyclic processes of cellular proliferation, differentiation and shedding. Recent studies have revealed that the endometrium harbours a large population of mesenchymal stromal cells. There are several reports indicating the homing of bone marrow stem cells and endothelial progenitor cells in regenerating endometrium. However, it is not clear whether endometrial cells mobilise to participate in the repair and regeneration of vital organs/tissues. We hypothesize that a very small percentage of the endometrial cells may set in circulation during menstrual cycle to facilitate endogenous regeneration of vital organs in the body. These cyclical events may be responsible for providing a protective barrier to women during her child-bearing age. Disappearance of this barrier after menopause probably makes her vulnerable for post menopausal symptoms. There is a circumstantial evidence to vouch for the presence of circulating stem/progenitor cells in peripheral blood which are likely to lodge in injured organs for their possible repair. As the endometrium harbors a large population of mesenchymal stromal cells, it is possible that retention of the uterus through secretion of reparative/growth promoting factors, may provide legitimate stem cells to enter circulation and "set up shop" in other tissues like bone marrow stem cells. In this context we propose uterus to be the culprit for the postmenopausal syndrome.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.mehy.2008.03.047
View details for Web of Science ID 000258641800009
View details for PubMedID 18571872
Fetal calf serum (FCS) is conventionally used for animal cell cultures due to its inherent growth-promoting activities. However animal welfare issues and stringent requirements for human transplantation studies demand a suitable alternative for FCS. With this view, we studied the effect of FCS, human AB serum (ABS), and human umbilical cord blood serum (UCBS) on murine islets of Langerhans and human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal-like cells (hBMCs). We found that there was no difference in morphology and functionality of mouse islets cultured in any of these three different serum supplements as indicated by insulin immunostaining. A comparative analysis of hBMCs maintained in each of these three different serum supplements demonstrated that UCBS supplemented media better supported proliferation of hBMCs. Moreover, a modification of adipogenic differentiation protocol using UCBS indicates that it can be used as a supplement to support differentiation of hBMCs into adipocytes. Our results demonstrate that UCBS not only is suitable for maintenance of murine pancreatic islets, but also supports attachment, propagation, and differentiation of hBMCs in vitro. We conclude that UCBS can serve as a better serum supplement for growth, maintenance, and differentiation of hBMCs, making it a more suitable supplement in cell systems that have therapeutic potential in human transplantation programs.
View details for Web of Science ID 000243666400001
View details for PubMedID 17316059