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Skeletal muscle-derived interstitialprogenitor cells (PICs) display stem cellproperties, being clonogenic, self-renewing,and multi-potent in vitro and in vivo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article number158
JournalStem cell research & therapy
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2017


King's Authors


Background: The development of cellular therapies to treat muscle wastage with disease or age is paramount.Resident muscle satellite cells are not currently regarded as a viable cell source due to their limited migration andgrowth capability ex vivo. This study investigated the potential of muscle-derived PW1+/Pax7–interstitial progenitorcells (PICs) as a source of tissue-specific stem/progenitor cells with stem cell properties and multipotency.Methods: Sca-1+/PW1+PICs were identified on tissue sections from hind limb muscle of 21-day-old mice, isolatedby magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS) technology and their phenotype and characteristics assessed over timein culture. Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labelled PICs were used to determine multipotency in vivo in a tumourformation assay.Results: Isolated PICs expressed markers of pluripotency (Oct3/4, Sox2, and Nanog), were clonog enic, and self-renewing with >60 population doublin gs, and a population doubling time of 15.8 ± 2.9 h. PICs demonstrated anability to generate both striated and smooth muscle, whilst also displaying the potential to differentiate into celltypes of the three germ layers both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, PICs did not form tumours in vivo.Conclusion: These findings open new avenues for a variety of solid tissue engineering and regeneration approaches,utilising a single multipotent stem cell type isolated from an easily accessible source such as skeletal muscle.

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