ENDO: Stem Cells Improve Bone Repair in Mice

May help in healing the 10 percent to 20 percent of fractures that do not heal

TUESDAY, June 17 (HealthDay News) -- Stem cells transplanted into mice with a fracture improve fracture repair, which may have implications for the 10 percent to 20 percent of fractures that fail to heal, according to study findings presented at the Endocrine Society's 90th Annual Meeting, held June 15-18 in San Francisco.

Froilan Granero-Molto, Ph.D., from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and colleagues isolated mesenchymal stem cells from mice based on CXCR4 expression, and engineered mesenchymal stem cells to express insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). The stem cells were injected intravenously into mice with a tibia fracture.

The researchers found that migration of the cells to the fracture was dependent on CXCR4 expression, which significantly increased the volume of the total callus and soft tissue. After 14 days, fractured mice transplanted with stem cells producing IGF-1 had significant improvements in the biomechanical properties of the callus, which was associated with increased collagen expression. They also had a significant increase in total bone volume, new bone and high mineralized bone.

"Our data indicate: 1) migration of mesenchymal stem cells depends on the presence of CXCR4; 2) IGF-1 improves fracture repair by increasing the mechanoproperties, bone volume, and bone and cartilage gene expression," Granero-Molto and colleagues conclude.

Abstract #P2-652
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