Differences between in vitro viability and differentiation and in vivo bone-forming efficacy of human mesenchymal stem cells cultured on PCL-TCP scaffolds

Rai, Bina, Lin, Jane, Lim, Zophia, Guldberg, Robert, Hutmacher, Dietmar, & Cool, Simon (2010) Differences between in vitro viability and differentiation and in vivo bone-forming efficacy of human mesenchymal stem cells cultured on PCL-TCP scaffolds. Biomaterials, 31, pp. 7960-7970.

View at publisher


Human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) possess great therapeutic potential for the treatment of bone disease and fracture non-union. Too often however, in vitro evidence alone of the interaction between hMSCs and the biomaterial of choice is used as justification for continued development of the material into the clinic. Clearly for hMSC-based regenerative medicine to be successful for the treatment of orthopaedic trauma, it is crucial to transplant hMSCs with a suitable carrier that facilitates their survival, optimal proliferation and osteogenic differentiation in vitro and in vivo. This motivated us to evaluate the use of polycaprolactone-20% tricalcium phosphate (PCL-TCP) scaffolds produced by fused deposition modeling for the delivery of hMSCs. When hMSCs were cultured on the PCL-TCP scaffolds and imaged by a combination of phase contrast, scanning electron and confocal laser microscopy, we observed five distinct stages of colonization over a 21-day period that were characterized by cell attachment, spreading, cellular bridging, the formation of a dense cellular mass and the accumulation of a mineralized extracellular matrix when induced with osteogenic stimulants. Having established that PCL-TCP scaffolds are able to support hMSC proliferation and osteogenic differentiation, we next tested the in vivo efficacy of hMSC-loaded PCL-TCP scaffolds in nude rat critical-sized femoral defects. We found that fluorescently labeled hMSCs survived in the defect site for up to 3 weeks post-transplantation. However, only 50% of the femoral defects treated with hMSCs responded favorably as determined by new bone volume. As such, we show that verification of hMSC viability and differentiation in vitro is not sufficient to predict the efficacy of transplanted stem cells to consistently promote bone formation in orthotopic defects in vivo.

Impact and interest:

62 citations in Scopus
59 citations in Web of Science®
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 39278
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Bone repair, Stem cell, scaffold, in vitro test, in vivo test
DOI: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2010.07.001
ISSN: 0142-9612
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING (090300) > Biomaterials (090301)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Deposited On: 21 Dec 2010 01:26
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:27

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page