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~Expectations for next-generation cell therapy~
Elucidation of the mechanism for promoting regeneration and control of inflammation by stem cell therapy

05.31.2021

Akihiko Taguchi et al., Department of Regenerative Medicine Research, Institute of Biomedical Research and Innovation, Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe, have elucidated the mechanism of cerebral neuronal function regeneration and hyperinflammation control by stem cell therapy using mesenchymal stem cells. This research finding was entirely unexpected and has demonstrated the increasing utility of mesenchymal stem cells. We are pleased to announce that these research findings have been published in the international peer-reviewed journal "Stem Cells" on March 11, 2021. This finding builds upon that from the research group of Akihiko Taguchi et al. last year where they elucidated the mechanism of promoting vascular regeneration by hematopoietic stem cells.
When considering both of the above-mentioned properties of mesenchymal and hematopoietic stem cells, their utility has the potential to be further expanded for regenerative medicine in Japan and overseas.

Please refer to the below for specific contents such as research results.


【Publication destination on Stem Cells】
URL: https://stemcellsjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/stem.3360


Regenerative medicine using stem cells is being clinically evaluated for various diseases, as it offers the potential to cure diseases that have a significant unmet medical need. Although regenerative therapy using mesenchymal stem cells has been performed in patients with various diseases, their mechanism of action has been elusive.
However, the latest research findings from the group of Department of Regenerative Medicine Research, Institute of Biomedical Research and Innovation, Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe have resolved this. Administration of mesenchymal stem cells at the site of injury results in them acting as an energy source such as glucose from vascular endothelial cells via gap junctions, and blood vessels. It was also revealed that they suppress excessive activation of endothelial cells. Furthermore, leukocyte cells (lymphocytes / monocytes) in peripheral blood were shown to have a direct effect via gap junctions.
Stem cell therapy using mesenchymal stem cells also have the potential to be effective in lethal lung injury caused by coronavirus, although the mechanism by which this occurs has been unclear. We report that their therapeutic mechanism is likely to originate from direct cell-cell interaction via gap junctions for lymphocytes / monocytes that can cause severe lung damage.


Maximizing impact of research findings and future plans

The development and use of hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cell-based therapies in Japan and overseas for regenerative medicine is still in its infancy as their mechanism of action has been poorly understood. In light of the latest research findings by the research group of Akihiko Taguchi et al., it is anticipated that there will be an acceleration in the development of more effective next-generation stem cell therapies. In addition, the development of mesenchymal stem cell therapy for patients with severe COVID-19 infection is underway in Japan and overseas. Now that their mechanism of action is understood, a new relationship between mesenchymal stem cells and lymphocytes / monocytes, which are central to inflammation will contribute to the development of novel therapies to treat patients with severe COVID-19. The Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe will be at the forefront of promoting the development of more effective and safer stem cell therapies.


<Title and Authors>
Title:Gap junction mediated cell-cell interaction between transplanted mesenchymal stem cells and vascular endothelium in stroke.


Authors:Akie Kikuchi-Taura1, Yuka Okinaka1, Orie Saino1, Yukiko Takeuchi1, Yuko Ogawa1, Takafumi Kimura2, Sheraz Gul3, Carsten Claussen3, Johannes Boltze4, Akihiko Taguchi1.
1:Department of Regenerative Medicine Research, Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe.
2:Japanese Red Cross Kinki Block Blood Center.
3:Fraunhofer Institute for Translational Medicine and Pharmacology ITMP.
4:School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick.

Journal:Stem Cells

<Explanation of words>
*1:Mesenchymal Stem Cells
Mesenchymal stem cells are one of the stem cells in the body. They can differentiate into bone, chondrocytes, and fat cells. Furthermore, they have attracted attention in regenerative medicine as they are able to suppress inflammatory reactions. The mechanism by which this occurs has now been elucidation.


*2:Gap Junction
Specialized intercellular channels (connexons) located in the cell membrane allows cells to connect with each other. Small molecules and ions with molecular weight of 1500 or less can pass directly from the cytoplasm of one cell to an adjacent cell via these connexons.


<Author/Contact>
Dr. Akihiko Taguchi
Department of Regenerative Medicine Research
Institute of Biomedical Research and Innovation
Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe
E-mail:kbic-pr (Please add " @fbri-kobe.org " to the end)

Dr. Akihiko Taguchi
Department of Regenerative Medicine Research
Institute of Biomedical Research and Innovation
Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe