Stem cells isolated from dental pulp possess the capacity for self-renewal and the potential for multi-lineage differentiation. However, dental pulp stem cells have different characteristics in terms of their culture conditions. The success of stem cells culture is governed by its micro-environmental niche. Therefore, we studied the effects of culture niche on long-term expansion of dental pulp stem cells in terms of cell morphology, growth kinetics, senescence pattern, cell surface marker expression differentiation capacity, and seeding plating density of dental pulp stem cells in four different, widely used media composition Among the various basal media tested, α-minimum essential media and knock out-minimum essential media supplemented with 10% fetal bovine serum were found to be the most optimal media composition in preserving the phenotypic characteristics and differentiation potential for prolonged periods as compared with DMEM-F12 and DMEM-LG. Plating density has been shown to affect overall yield. As a conclusion, the adoption of an appropriate culture system significantly improved cell yield, thus enabling the attainment of sufficient yields for therapeutic applications economizing in terms of cost of production and minimizing seeding cell density for maximum yield.
Lately, several new stem cell sources and their effective isolation have been reported that claim to have potential for therapeutic applications. However, it is not yet clear which type of stem cell sources are most potent and best for targeted therapy. Lack of understanding of nature of these cells and their lineage-specific propensity might hinder their full potential. Therefore, understanding the gene expression profile that indicates their lineage-specific proclivity is fundamental to the development of successful cell-based therapies.
The post-natal dental pulp tissue contains a population of multipotent mesenchymal progenitor cells known as dental pulp stromal/stem cells (DPSCs), with high proliferative potential for self-renewal. In this investigation, we explored the potential of DPSCs to differentiate into pancreatic cell lineage resembling islet-like cell aggregates (ICAs). We isolated, propagated, and characterized DPSCs and demonstrated that these could be differentiated into adipogenic, chondrogenic, and osteogenic lineage upon exposure to an appropriate cocktail of differentiating agents. Using a three-step protocol reported previously by our group, we succeeded in obtaining ICAs from DPSCs. The identity of ICAs was confirmed as islets by dithiozone-positive staining, as well as by expression of C-peptide, Pdx-1, Pax4, Pax6, Ngn3, and Isl-1. There were several-fold up-regulations of these transcription factors proportional to days of differentiation as compared with undifferentiated DPSCs. Day 10 ICAs released insulin and C-peptide in a glucose-dependent manner, exhibiting in vitro functionality. Our results demonstrated for the first time that DPSCs could be differentiated into pancreatic cell lineage and offer an unconventional and non-controversial source of human tissue that could be used for autologous stem cell therapy in diabetes.
BACKGROUND AIMS. Dental pulp stromal cells (DPSC) are considered to be a promising source of stem cells in the field of regenerative therapy. However, the usage of DPSC in transplantation requires large-scale expansion to cater for the need for clinical quantity without compromising current good manufacturing practice (cGMP). Existing protocols for cell culturing make use of fetal bovine serum (FBS) as a nutritional supplement. Unfortunately, FBS is an undesirable additive to cells because it carries the risk of transmitting viral and prion diseases. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to examine the efficacy of human platelet lysate (HPL) as a substitute for FBS in a large-scale set-up. METHODS. We expanded the DPSC in Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium-knock-out (DMEM-KO) with either 10% FBS or 10% HPL, and studied the characteristics of DPSC at pre- (T25 culture flask) and post- (5-STACK chamber) large-scale expansion in terms of their identity, quality, functionality, molecular signatures and cytogenetic stability. RESULTS. In both pre- and post-large-scale expansion, DPSC expanded in HPL showed extensive proliferation of cells (c. 2-fold) compared with FBS; the purity, immune phenotype, colony-forming unit potential and differentiation were comparable. Furthermore, to understand the gene expression profiling, the transcriptomes and cytogenetics of DPSC expanded under HPL and FBS were compared, revealing similar expression profiles. CONCLUSIONS. We present a highly economized expansion of DPSC in HPL, yielding double the amount of cells while retaining their basic characteristics during a shorter time period under cGMP conditions, making it suitable for therapeutic applications.