Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Hepatocyte-Like Cells by Autologous Serum after Radiofrequency Ablation of Liver Tumor


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been shown to differentiate into liver cells in serum of part-resection liver, but it was hardly feasible in clinical use. Our studies revealed that MSCs could differentiate into hepatocyte-like cells in autologous serum after radiofrequency ablation (RFA) therapy of the liver tumor. Rabbits with liver tumor subsequently treated with RFA therapy. Serum was collected from those rabbits before RFA therapy and 72 hours after RFA therapy. MSCs were isolated from each rabbit’s bone marrow and cultured in DMEM medium containing the following different supplements: 30% fetal calf serum (FCS group), 30% rabbit autologous serum (AS group) or 30% autologous serum after RFA treatment of the liver tumor (ASRF group), observed by electron microscopy, flow cytometry, immunofluorescence. Seven days later, most of the spindle-shaped MSCs in the ASRF group transformed into polygon or round-shaped cells resembling hepatocytes, and the percentage in S/G2/M phase was higher than in the FCS or AS groups. Fourteen days later, slender microvilli, cell-cell junction structures and cholangiole emerged in the cells belonging to the ASRF group, the expression of albumin and CK18 was observed only in the differentiated cells from the ASRF group. These changes were not observed in the FCS group or the AS group. This study may provide a potential cell source and culture process for clinical application in liver injury treatment.

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Yang, Y. , Chen, X. , Wu, T. , Xu, X. , Cao, G. , Li, H. and Li, Y. (2014) Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Hepatocyte-Like Cells by Autologous Serum after Radiofrequency Ablation of Liver Tumor. Stem Cell Discovery, 4, 99-106. doi: 10.4236/scd.2014.44011.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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