Burn wound MSCs potential source for skin grafting
MedWire News: Study findings suggest that burn wound eschar-derived mesenchymal cells (MSCs) represent a population of multipotent stem cells, which could be a new resource for engineering approaches to heal burn wounds.
Tissue engineering is the most promising approach to prevent scar formation, but the source of cells applied to tissue scaffolding is problematic.
MSCs isolated from bone marrow can be used to stimulate wound healing, but harvesting of these cells is a painful procedure that yields only limited amounts of multipotent cells.
To assess whether eschar-derived cells fulfill the criteria for multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells, Magda Ulrich (Association of Dutch Burn Centers, Beverwijk, the Netherlands) and team assessed cells from burn eschar (excised 11‑26 days after burn injury), dermis, and adipose tissue.
Flow cytometry results revealed that all three cell populations in the study met mesenchymal stromal cell definitions. They were positive for cluster of differentiation (CD)90, CD105, and CD73, while scoring negative for CD31, CD45, CD14, CD79a, and human leukocyte antigen-DR.
Tissue staining revealed that mesenchymal cells isolated from adipose tissue and eschar tissue differentiated toward osteogenic, chondrogenic, and adipogenic lineages. Conversely, cells from normal dermis showed no differentiation despite matching the required CD marker profile.
In addition, all three cell types expressed significantly more collagen 2 RNA when cultured in chondrogenic differentiation medium compared with fibroblast culture medium control samples.
The authors note that the origin of the burn eschar-derived MSCs (BESCs) remains unknown, but could possibly be from adipose tissue or from another adult population of MSCs migrating from their respective tissues to the site of the burn injury.
Ulrich and team add that they were unable to isolate BESCs from early excisions, but did so successfully in the current late-excision samples.
"Regardless of the timing of influx of these cells, we think this finding represents an interesting option for novel wound treatment, because it offers the possibility to isolate the BESCs from a late excision eschar and use them in tissue engineering applications for burn wounds," write the authors in the journal Cell Transplantation.
They call for further research to elucidate the origins of the stem cells in burn eschar, their possible link to myofibroblasts, and how the wound environment influences their function.
MedWire (www.medwire-news.md) is an independent clinical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2012
By Ingrid Grasmo, Medical Reporter