Isolation and Characterization of a Fetal-Maternal Microchimeric Stem Cell Population in Maternal Hair Follicles Long after Parturition
Fetal-maternal microchimerism describes the acquisition of fetal stem cells (FSC) by the mother during pregnancy and their long-term persistence after parturition. FSC may engraft in a variety of maternal tissues especially if there is organ/tissue injury, but their role and mechanism of persistence still remains elusive. Clinical applications due to their pluripotency, immunomodulatory effects and accessibility make them good candidates for ex-vivo manipulation and autologous therapies. The hair follicles contain a distinctive niche for pluripotent stem cells (PSC). To date, there is no published evidence of fetal microchimerism in the hair follicle. In our study, follicular unit extraction (FUE) technique allowed easy stem cell cultures to be obtained while simple hair follicle removal by pull-out technique failed to generate stem cells in culture. We identified microchimeric fetal stem cells within the primitive population of maternal stem cells isolated from the hair follicles with typical mesenchymal phenotype, expression of PSC genes and differentiation potential towards osteocytes, adypocites and chondrocytes. This is the first study to isolate fetal microchimeric stem cells in adult human hair long after parturition. We presume a sanctuary partition mechanism with PSC of the mother deposited during early embryogenesis could explain their long-term persistence.
KeywordsPluripotent stem cells MSC, hair follicle Microchimerism HLA-G Immunomodulation Transplantation
Part of the research was supported from the grant 108BG 01/10/2016) PN-III-P2-2.1-BG-2016-0117 directed by Assoc. prof. Sergiu Susman. The the work was done at the Research Center for Functional Genomics, Biomedicine and Translational Medicine of the University of Medicine and Pharmacy Iuliu Hatieganu.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
The study was approved by the ethics committee of the University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Iuliu Hatieganu” Cluj-Napoca, reg. no. 100/08.03.2017.
Conflict of Interests
All authors have read and approved this version of the article, and due care has been taken to ensure the integrity of the work. No part of this article has been published or submitted elsewhere. No financial conflict of interest exists in the submission of this manuscript.
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