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Zang Z.J.,The Third Affiliated HospitalGuangzhou China | Wang J.,The Third Affiliated HospitalGuangzhou China | Chen Z.,Center for Stem Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering | Gao Y.,Reproductive Medicine Center and Guangdong provincial Key Laboratory of Reproductive Medicine | And 5 more authors.
Stem Cells | Year: 2017

Stem Leydig cell (SLC) transplantation could provide a new strategy for treating the testosterone deficiency. Our previous study demonstrated that CD51 (also called integrin αv) might be a putative cell surface marker for SLCs, but the physiological function and efficacy of CD51+ SLCs treatment remain unclear. Here, we explore the potential therapeutic benefits of CD51+ SLCs transplantation and whether these transplanted cells can be regulated by the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis. CD51+ cells were isolated from the testes of 12-weeks-old C57BL/6 mice, and we showed that such cells expressed SLC markers and that they were capable of self-renewal, extensive proliferation, and differentiation into multiple mesenchymal cell lineages and LCs in vitro. As a specific cytotoxin that eliminates Leydig cells (LCs) in adult rats, ethane dimethanesulfonate (EDS) was used to ablate LCs before the SLC transplantation. After being transplanted into the testes of EDS-treated rats, the CD51+ cells differentiated into mature LCs, and the recipient rats showed a partial recovery of testosterone production and spermatogenesis. Notably, a testosterone analysis revealed a circadian rhythm of testosterone secretion in cell-transplanted rats, and these testosterone secretions could be suppressed by decapeptyl (a luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonist), suggesting that the transplanted cells might be regulated by the HPG axis. This study is the first to demonstrate that CD51+ SLCs can restore the neuroendocrine regulation of testicular function by physiologically recovering the expected episodic changes in diurnal testosterone serum levels and that SLC transplantation may provide a new tool for the studies of testosterone deficiency treatment. © 2017 AlphaMed Press.

Liu J.,Sun Yat Sen University | Liu J.,Guangdong Medical College | Li W.,Center for Stem Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering | Li W.,Sun Yat Sen University | And 14 more authors.
Stem Cells | Year: 2014

The LIM-homeobox transcription factor islet-1 (ISL1) has been proposed to mark a cardiovascular progenitor cell lineage that gives rise to cardiomyocytes, endothelial cells, and smooth muscle cells. The aim of this study was to investigate whether forced expression of ISL1 in human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) influenced the differentiation capacity and angiogenic properties of hMSCs. The lentiviral vector, EF1α-ISL1, was constructed using the Multisite Gateway System and used to transduce hMSCs. We found that ISL1 overexpression did not alter the proliferation, migration, or survival of hMSCs or affect their ability to differentiate into osteoblasts, adipocytes, cardiomyocytes, or endotheliocytes. However, ISL1-hMSCs differentiated into smooth muscle cells more efficiently than control hMSCs. Furthermore, conditioned medium from ISL1-hMSCs greatly enhanced the survival, migration, and tube-formation ability of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in vitro. In vivo angiogenesis assays also showed much more vascular-like structures in the group cotransplanted with ISL1-hMSCs and HUVECs than in the group cotransplanted with control hMSCs and HUVECs. Quantitative RT-PCR and antibody arrays detected monocyte chemoattractant protein-3 (MCP3) at a higher level in conditioned medium from ISL1-hMSCs cultures than in conditioned medium from control hMSCs. Neutralization assays showed that addition of an anti-MCP3 antibody to ISL1-hMSCs-conditioned medium efficiently abolished the angiogenesis-promoting effect of ISL1-hMSCs. Our data suggest that overexpression of ISL1 in hMSCs promotes angiogenesis in vitro and in vivo through increasing secretion of paracrine factors, smooth muscle differentiation ability, and enhancing the survival of HUVECs. Stem Cells 2014;32:1843-1854 © 2014 AlphaMed Press.

Jiang M.H.,Sun Yat Sen University | Jiang M.H.,Center for Stem Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering | Cai B.,Center for Stem Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering | Cai B.,Sun Yat Sen University | And 17 more authors.
Cell Research | Year: 2014

The ability to identify and isolate lineage-specific stem cells from adult tissues could facilitate cell replacement therapy. Leydig cells (LCs) are the primary source of androgen in the mammalian testis, and the prospective identification of stem Leydig cells (SLCs) may offer new opportunities for treating testosterone deficiency. Here, in a transgenic mouse model expressing GFP driven by the Nestin (Nes) promoter, we observed Nes-GFP + cells located in the testicular interstitial compartment where SLCs normally reside. We showed that these Nes-GFP + cells expressed LIFR and PDGFR-α, but not LC lineage markers. We further observed that these cells were capable of clonogenic self-renewal and extensive proliferation in vitro and could differentiate into neural or mesenchymal cell lineages, as well as LCs, with the ability to produce testosterone, under defined conditions. Moreover, when transplanted into the testes of LC-disrupted or aging models, the Nes-GFP + cells colonized the interstitium and partially increased testosterone production, and then accelerated meiotic and post-meiotic germ cell recovery. In addition, we further demonstrated that CD51 might be a putative cell surface marker for SLCs, similar with Nestin. Taken together, these results suggest that Nes-GFP + cells from the testis have the characteristics of SLCs, and our study would shed new light on developing stem cell replacement therapy for testosterone deficiency. © 2014 IBCB, SIBS, CAS All rights reserved.

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