Characterisation of mesenchymal cells from osteophytes in osteoarthritis

Singh, Sanjleena (2009) Characterisation of mesenchymal cells from osteophytes in osteoarthritis. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


Osteophytes form through the process of chondroid metamorphosis of fibrous tissue followed by endochondral ossification. Osteophytes have been found to consist of three different mesenchymal tissue regions including endochondral bone formation within cartilage residues, intra-membranous bone formation within fibrous tissue and bone formation within bone marrow spaces. All these features provide evidence of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) involvement in osteophyte formation; nevertheless, it remains to be characterised. MSC from numerous mesenchymal tissues have been isolated but bone marrow remains the “ideal” due to the ease of ex vivo expansion and multilineage potential. However, the bone marrow stroma has a relatively low number of MSC, something that necessitates the need for long-term culture and extensive population doublings in order to obtain a sufficient number of cells for therapeutic applications. MSC in vitro have limited proliferative capacity and extensive passaging compromises differentiation potential. To overcome this barrier, tissue derived MSC are of strong interest for extensive study and characterisation, with a focus on their potential application in therapeutic tissue regeneration. To date, no MSC type cell has been isolated from osteophyte tissue, despite this tissue exhibiting all the hallmark features of a regenerative tissue. Therefore, this study aimed to isolate and characterise cells from osteophyte tissues in relation to their phenotype, differentiation potential, immuno-modulatory properties, proliferation, cellular ageing, longevity and chondrogenesis in in vitro defect model in comparison to patient matched bone marrow stromal cells (bMSC). Osteophyte derived cells were isolated from osteophyte tissue samples collected during knee replacement surgery. These cells were characterised by the expression of cell surface antigens, differentiation potential into mesenchymal lineages, growth kinetics and modulation of allo-immune responses. Multipotential stem cells were identified from all osteophyte samples namely osteophyte derived mesenchymal stem cells (oMSC). Extensively expanded cell cultures (passage 4 and 9 respectively) were used to confirm cytogenetic stability and study signs of cellular aging, telomere length and telomerase activity. Cultured cells at passage 4 were used to determine 84 pathway focused stem cell related gene expression profile. Micro mass pellets were cultured in chondrogenic differentiation media for 21 days for phenotypic and chondrogenic related gene expression. Secondly, cell pellets differentiated overnight were placed into articular cartilage defects and cultured for further 21 days in control medium and chondrogenic medium to study chondrogenesis and cell behaviour. The surface antigen expression of oMSC was consistent with that of mesenchymal stem cells, such as lacking the haematopoietic and common leukocyte markers (CD34, CD45) while expressing those related to adhesion (CD29, CD166, CD44) and stem cells (CD90, CD105, CD73). The proliferation capacity of oMSC in culture was superior to that of bMSC, and they readily differentiated into tissues of the mesenchymal lineages. oMSC also demonstrated the ability to suppress allogeneic T-cell proliferation, which was associated with the expression of tryptophan degrading enzyme indoleamine 2,3 dioxygenase (IDO). Cellular aging was more prominent in late passage bMSC than in oMSC. oMSC had longer telomere length in late passages compared with bMSC, although there was no significant difference in telomere lengths in the early passages in either cell type. Telomerase activity was detectable only in early passage oMSC and not in bMSC. In osteophyte tissues telomerase positive cells were found to be located peri vascularly and were Stro-1 positive. Eighty-four pathway-focused genes were investigated and only five genes (APC, CCND2, GJB2, NCAM and BMP2) were differentially expressed between bMSC and oMSC. Chondrogenically induced micro mass pellets of oMSC showed higher staining intensity for proteoglycans, aggrecan and collagen II. Differential expression of chondrogenic related genes showed up regulation of Aggrecan and Sox 9 in oMSC and collagen II in bMSC. The in vitro defect models of oMSC in control medium showed rounded and aggregated cells staining positively for proteoglycan and presence of some extracellular matrix. In contrast, defects with bMSC showed fragmentation and loss of cells, fibroblast-like cell morphology staining positively for proteoglycans. For defects maintained in chondrogenic medium, rounded, aggregated and proteoglycan positive cells were found in both oMSC and bMSC cultures. Extracellular matrix and cellular integration into newly formed matrix was evident only in oMSC defects. For analysis of chondrocyte hypertrophy, strong expression of type X collagen could be noticed in the pellet cultures and transplanted bMSC. In summary, this study demonstrated that osteophyte derived cells had similar properties to mesenchymal stem cells in the expression of antigen phenotype, differential potential and suppression of allo-immune response. Furthermore, when compared to bMSC, oMSC maintained a higher proliferative capacity due to a retained level of telomerase activity in vitro, which may account for the relatively longer telomeres delaying growth arrest by replicative senescence compared with bMSC. oMSC behaviour in defects supported chondrogenesis which implies that cells derived from regenerative tissue can be an alternative source of stem cells and have a potential clinical application for therapeutic stem cell based tissue regeneration.

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ID Code: 31298
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Xiao, Yin & Crawford, Ross
Keywords: osteophyte, mesenchymal stem cells, tissue derived cells, allo-immune response,osteoarthritis, telomere length, telomerase activity, longevity, senescence,chondrogenesis, cell integration, cartilage, gene expression, differentiation,osteogenesis, cartilage defect model
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Past > Schools > School of Engineering Systems
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 12 Mar 2010 05:40
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2011 19:55

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