2006 年 26 巻 1 号 p. 44-48
Human umbilical cord blood (UCB) cells have many advantages as a source of cell transplantation because of their immaturity compared with adult cells. Here, with a view to utilize UCB for cell transplantation into injured liver, we investigated whether UCB cells have a potential for differentiation into functional hepatocyte-like cells (HLCs).
UCB cells were cultured in the primary culture system supplemented with a combination of FGF-1, FGF-2, LIF, SCF and HGF. About 50% of the adherent UCB cells expressed albumin (ALB) and hepatocyte-lineage markers were co-expressed in the ALB-positive cells. Then, in the model for cell transplantation into NOD/SCID mice with transient liver injury, human UCB-derived HLCs were detected in the recipient-livers. And, the UCB-derived HLCs secreted human ALB into the recipient-sera. Moreover, in the model for cell transplantation into SCID mice with chronic liver damage, the engrafted UCB cells appeared at higher frequencies than the model with transient damage, and human ALB was abundantly expressed in UCB-derived HLCs in the recipient-liver.
This study provides the evidence that UCB can supply functional HLCs. UCB could be a potential source of cell transplantation for liver injury.