University of Oulu

Human bone marrow stem cells—a novel aspect to bone remodelling and mesenchymal diseases

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Author: Leskelä, Hannu-Ville1,2
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Surgery
2Oulu University Hospital, Clinical Research Center
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: 2006
Publish Date: 2006-11-28
Thesis type: Doctoral Dissertation
Defence Note: Academic dissertation to be presented, with the assent of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Oulu, for public defence in the Auditorium of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, on December 8th, 2006, at 12 noon
Reviewer: Docent Mikko Lammi
Professor Timo Ylikomi


The stem cell is a primitive cell that is capable of dividing to reproduce itself and can give rise to a selection of differentiated progeny. Stem cells are thought to be involved in or even main factors in many diseases. In postnatal humans, mesenchymal tissues have the capacity to regenerate from stem cells called mesenchymal stem cells (MSC). It is currently thought that these cells will become the basis of therapy for many diseases. In the present study, a novel in vitro method was developed to examine human bone marrow derived MSC differentiation into osteoblast lineage, and to study the role of MSC in a variety of mesenchymal diseases.

The ability of MSCs to differentiate into osteoblasts was investigated during aging. In addition, the interindividual variability in the osteogenesis of MSCs and in the osteoblastic response of MSC to estrogen and testosterone was studied. Furthermore, an ex vivo model using a human aortic valve microenvironment was developed to explore whether the extracellular matrix influences the osteoblastic differentiation of the MSC. Finally, the role of MSC in neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) related congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia (CPT) was studied.

It was found that after menopause the osteogenic potential of MSCs does not decrease. It was also found that estrogen receptor (ER) alpha genotype confers interindividual variability of response to estrogen and testosterone in MSC derived osteoblasts. In addition, it was found that the non-calcified valves with living valve cells inhibited osteogenesis of co-cultured MSCs, whereas the calcified and devitalised valves promoted differentiation towards an osteoblastic lineage. Finally, MSCs from NF1-related pseudarthrosis showed altered NF1 gene expression, poor osteoblastic differentiation and bone formation.

In conclusion, MSC can be easily isolated from the bone marrow and MSC has the capacity to regenerate tissue even at later stages of life. These results could help explain the contradictory effects of 17β-estradiol (E2) on osteoblasts in vitro and might also provide new insights into understanding the differences in responses to hormone replacement therapy. It seems that adult stem cells from bone marrow undergo milieu-dependent differentiation to express phenotypes that are similar to cells in the local microenvironment. Finally, the NF1 gene was shown to have a role in bone development and remodelling.

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Series: Acta Universitatis Ouluensis. D, Medica
ISSN-E: 1796-2234
ISBN: 951-42-8282-5
ISBN Print: 951-42-8281-7
Issue: 902
Copyright information: © University of Oulu, 2006. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.