Autologous Stem Cell

Principle Investigator: Yuyus Kusnadi, Ph.D

Stem  cell are cells which have self renewing ability as well as differentiating potentials to different types of cells, and therefore, are able to replace damaged or non-functional cells or even tissues in our body. The limit of stem cells ability to differentiate depends largely on its potency, whether they are pluripotent, multipotent or unipotent. These potency affect the stem cells' ability to differentiate into different types of cells; for example pluripotent stem cells have much better flexibility to differentiate to any types of cells whereas multipotent stem cells can only differentiate into specific cell types which are of one lineage. As stem cell therapy is largely used as a regenerative medicine, the type of stem cells used are the ones which are pluripotent or multipotent, to enable stem cells to renew old or damaged cells and tissues in the body. 

In Stem Cell and Cancer Institute, our stem cell therapy focuses more on multipotent Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs), which are one of the most versatile sources of stem cells in our body. These MSCs can be derived from bone marrow, adipose tissues as well as umbilical cord. Our autologous  stem cell therapy  is a novel therapeutic intervention which uses an individual’s  stem cells, which are cultured and expanded in our GMP certified laboratory, and reintroduced back into the same person. There are several advantages of such an approach, which include the minimization of risks from systemic immunological reactions, bio-incompatibility, and disease transmissions. Thus far, our stem cell therapies have been used successfully to treat osteoarthritis, myocardial infarction, bone fracture and spinal cord injury.

Endothelial Progenitor Cells (EPCs)

Principle Investigator: Yuyus Kusnadi, Ph.D

Endothelial progenitor cells or better known as EPCs are a group of cells which play a role in the regeneration of the endothelial lining of blood vessels; to replace old and injured endothelial cells of the blood vessels. EPCs have been proven to have a role in the pathogenesis of atherosclerotic and vascular related diseases, such as strokes and myocardial infarction (Asahara et al., 2011).

EPCs can be obtained from differentiated mononuclear cells (MNCs) using appropriate differentiation culture medium. As of now, the definition of EPCs population, based on their morphology, remains unclear, although several of them do produce specific cellular markers, such as VE-Cadherin/CD144 and KDR/Flk-1/VEGFR2 markers. The cluster of EPCs can be grouped into three major categories; early EPCs, circulating angiogenic cells (CACs) and outgrowth endothelial cells (OECs). These EPC populations differ based on their type of culture as well as length of culture, resulting in different cell populations at the end of the day, judging from both their morphological appearance as well as the cellular surface markers produced. Although there are several attempts in classifying EPCs based on their cell surface markers, there is no definitive phenotypes as of yet, unlike stem cells, due to the various classifications reported (Medina et al., 2010; Richardson and Yoder, 2011).

All types of EPCs are capable of inducing angiogenesis in different ways via mutual synergic interaction (Kwon et al., 2011; Bondarenko et al., 2014). Early EPCs demonstrated that they are able to induce angiogenesis through paracrine action, by producing a large amount of pro-angiogenic factors such as VEGFA as well as IL-8 (Cheng et al., 2013). OECs, on the other hand, are more mature form of EPCs, which are capable of proliferating as well as performing revascularization and thus, participate in the vessel formation in vivo, although they are not capable of conducting paracrine action (Bondarenko et al., 2014). A newly defined phenotypes of EPCs, known as CACs have similar characteristics with early EPCs, which are more hematopoietic-like, compared to OECs which are more endothelial-like. This population of EPCs are less well known compared to the other two populations, as the characteristics are even more diversified.

In Stem Cell and Cancer Institute, the Translational Research department uses EPCs to conduct in-vitro studies which aim to improve EPCs functionality and efficiency; thus enabling EPCs to be used as cellular therapy. Clinical trials are currently in progress to check EPCs efficiency as a therapy for ischemic diseases, such as myocardial infarction and stroke.

Stem Cell

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