Quantification of Mesenchymal Stem Cell (MSC) Delivery to a Target Site Using In Vivo Confocal Microscopy
Phillips, Joseph P.
Ruiz, Juan P.
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CitationMortensen, Luke J., Oren Levy, Joseph P. Phillips, Tara Stratton, Brian Triana, Juan P. Ruiz, Fangqi Gu, Jeffrey M. Karp, and Charles P. Lin. 2013. “Quantification of Mesenchymal Stem Cell (MSC) Delivery to a Target Site Using In Vivo Confocal Microscopy.” PLoS ONE 8 (10): e78145. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0078145. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0078145.
AbstractThe ability to deliver cells to appropriate target tissues is a prerequisite for successful cell-based therapy. To optimize cell therapy it is therefore necessary to develop a robust method of in vivo cell delivery quantification. Here we examine Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) labeled with a series of 4 membrane dyes from which we select the optimal dye combination for pair-wise comparisons of delivery to inflamed tissue in the mouse ear using confocal fluorescence imaging. The use of an optimized dye pair for simultaneous tracking of two cell populations in the same animal enables quantification of a test population that is referenced to an internal control population, thereby eliminating intra-subject variations and variations in injected cell numbers. Consistent results were obtained even when the administered cell number varied by more than an order of magnitude, demonstrating an ability to neutralize one of the largest sources of in vivo experimental error and to greatly reduce the number of cells required to evaluate cell delivery. With this method, we are able to show a small but significant increase in the delivery of cytokine pre-treated MSCs (TNF-α & IFN-γ) compared to control MSCs. Our results suggest future directions for screening cell strategies using our in vivo cell delivery assay, which may be useful to develop methods to maximize cell therapeutic potential.
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