Muscle Rejuvenation

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Science  28 Jul 2006:
Vol. 313, Issue 5786, pp. 413
DOI: 10.1126/science.313.5786.413a

It is already possible to treat some immune disorders by bone marrow transplantation, which can reconstitute defective tissues by introducing healthy cells. In the future, it is hoped that it will be possible to treat a variety of disorders by using cell therapy. One technical hurdle that must be overcome is the efficient delivery of injected cells to their correct target sites (homing), while maintaining, or perhaps even enhancing, successful incorporation and long-term survival of their progeny.

Galvez et al. have improved the delivery of mesoangioblasts, which are stem cells that are associated with blood vessels and are involved in muscle regeneration, to repair defective muscles in a mouse model of muscular dystrophy. Treating donor mesoangioblasts with cytokines and promoting the expression of specific adhesion proteins before injection into recipient animals resulted in the efficient colonization and supplementation of muscle tissue. In addition to migrating into growing muscles, the donor cells took up positions as satellite cells (committed muscle stem cells) in the basal lamina of myofibers. It is hoped that similar strategies will be helpful in devising appropriate cell-based therapies in patients with muscular dystrophies. — SMH

J. Cell Biol. 174, 245 (2006).

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