Authors: Manni ML, Czajka CA, Oury TD, Gilbert TW.
Title: Extracellular Matrix Powder Protects Against Bleomycin-Induced Pulmonary Fibrosis.
Summary: Pulmonary fibrosis refers to a group of lung diseases characterized by inflammation, fibroblast proliferation, and excessive collagen deposition. Although the mechanisms underlying pulmonary fibrosis are poorly understood, current evidence suggests that epithelial injury contributes to the development of fibrosis. Regenerative medicine approaches using extracellular matrix (ECM) scaffolds have been shown to promote site-specific tissue remodeling. This led to the hypothesis that particulate ECM would promote normal tissue repair and attenuate bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis. C57BL/6 mice were treated intratracheally with bleomycin or saline with or without a particulate form of ECM scaffold from porcine urinary bladder matrix (UBM-ECM) or enzymatically digested UBM-ECM. Mice were sacrificed 5 and 14 days after exposure. Compared to control mice, bleomycin-exposed mice had similar increases in inflammation in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid regardless of UBM-ECM treatment. However, 14 days after exposure, lung histology and collagen levels revealed that mice treated with bleomycin and the particulate or digested UBM-ECM had negligible fibrosis, whereas mice given only bleomycin had marked fibrosis. Administration of the particulate UBM-ECM 24 h after bleomycin exposure also significantly protected against pulmonary injury. In vitro epithelial cell migration and wound healing assays revealed that particulate UBM-ECM promoted epithelial cell chemotaxis and migration. This suggests that promotion of epithelial wound repair may be one mechanism in which UBM-ECM limits pulmonary fibrosis.
Title: Injectable fibroblast growth factor-2 coacervate for persistent angiogenesis.
Summary: Enhancing the maturity of the newly formed blood vessels is critical for the success of therapeutic angiogenesis. The maturation of vasculature relies on active participation of mural cells to stabilize endothelium and a basal level of relevant growth factors. We set out to design and successfully achieved robust angiogenesis using an injectable polyvalent coacervate of a polycation, heparin, and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF2). FGF2 was loaded into the coacervate at nearly 100% efficiency. In vitro assays demonstrated that the matrix protected FGF2 from proteolytic degradations. FGF2 released from the coacervate was more effective in the differentiation of endothelial cells and chemotaxis of pericytes than free FGF2. One injection of 500 ng of FGF2 in the coacervate elicited comprehensive angiogenesis in vivo. The number of endothelial and mural cells increased significantly, and the local tissue contained more and larger blood vessels with increased circulation. Mural cells actively participated during the whole angiogenic process: Within 7 d of the injection, pericytes were recruited to close proximity of the endothelial cells. Mature vasculature stabilized by vascular smooth muscle cells persisted till at least 4 wk. On the other hand, bolus injection of an identical amount of free FGF2 induced weak angiogenic responses. These results demonstrate the potential of polyvalent coacervate as a new controlled delivery platform.
Title: Esophageal preservation in five male patients after endoscopic inner-layer circumferential resection in the setting of superficial cancer: a regenerative medicine approach with a biologic scaffold.
Title: Rescue of lethal hepatic failure by hepatized lymph nodes in mice.
Summary: BACKGROUND & AIMS: Hepatocyte transplantation is a potential therapeutic approach for liver disease. However, most patients with chronic hepatic damage have cirrhosis and fibrosis, which limit the potential for cell-based therapy of the liver. The development of an ectopic liver as an additional site of hepatic function represents a new approach for patients with end-stage liver disease. We investigated the development and function of liver tissue in lymph nodes in mice with liver failure.
Title: Substantial expression of mature elastin in arterial constructs.
Summary: Mature elastin synthesis is a key challenge in arterial tissue engineering. Most engineered vessels lack elastic fibers in the medial layer and those present are poorly organized. The objective of this study is to increase mature elastin synthesis in small-diameter arterial constructs. Adult primary baboon smooth muscle cells (SMCs) were seeded in the lumen of porous tubular scaffolds fabricated from a biodegradable elastomer, poly(glycerol sebacate) (PGS) and cultured in a pulsatile flow bioreactor for 3 wk. We tested the effect of pore sizes on construct properties by histological, biochemical, and mechanical evaluations. Histological analysis revealed circumferentially organized extracellular matrix proteins including elastin and the presence of multilayered SMCs expressing calponin and α-smooth muscle actin. Biochemical analysis demonstrated that the constructs contained mature elastin equivalent to 19% of the native arteries. Mechanical tests indicated that the constructs could withstand up to 200 mmHg burst pressure and exhibited compliance comparable to native arteries. These results show that nontransfected cells in PGS scaffolds in unsupplemented medium produced a substantial amount of mature elastin within 3 wk and the elastic fibers had similar orientation as those in native arteries. The 25-32 μm pore size supported cell organization and elastin synthesis more than larger pore sizes. To our knowledge, there was no prior report of the synthesis of mature and organized elastin in arterial constructs without exogenous factors or viral transduction.
Authors: Du Y, Roh DS, Funderburgh ML, Mann MM, Marra KG, Rubin JP, Li X, Funderburgh JL.
Title: Adipose-derived stem cells differentiate to keratocytes in vitro.
Summary: Adipose-derived stem cells (ADSC) are an abundant population of adult stem cells with the potential to differentiate into several specialized tissue types, including neural and neural crest-derived cells. This study sought to determine if ADSC express keratocyte-specific phenotypic markers when cultured under conditions inducing differentiation of corneal stromal stem cells to keratocytes.
Authors: Lopez F, Di Bartolo C, Piazza T, Passannanti A, Gerlach JC, Gridelli B, Triolo F.
Title: A quality risk management model approach for cell therapy manufacturing.
Summary: International regulatory authorities view risk management as an essential production need for the development of innovative, somatic cell-based therapies in regenerative medicine. The available risk management guidelines, however, provide little guidance on specific risk analysis approaches and procedures applicable in clinical cell therapy manufacturing. This raises a number of problems. Cell manufacturing is a poorly automated process, prone to operator-introduced variations, and affected by heterogeneity of the processed organs/tissues and lot-dependent variability of reagent (e.g., collagenase) efficiency. In this study, the principal challenges faced in a cell-based product manufacturing context (i.e., high dependence on human intervention and absence of reference standards for acceptable risk levels) are identified and addressed, and a risk management model approach applicable to manufacturing of cells for clinical use is described for the first time. The use of the heuristic and pseudo-quantitative failure mode and effect analysis/failure mode and critical effect analysis risk analysis technique associated with direct estimation of severity, occurrence, and detection is, in this specific context, as effective as, but more efficient than, the analytic hierarchy process. Moreover, a severity/occurrence matrix and Pareto analysis can be successfully adopted to identify priority failure modes on which to act to mitigate risks. The application of this approach to clinical cell therapy manufacturing in regenerative medicine is also discussed.