Liver fibrosis alleviation after co-transplantation of hematopoietic stem cells with mesenchymal stem cells in patients with thalassemia major.
Ghavamzadeh A1, Sotoudeh M2, Hashemi Taheri AP3, Alimoghaddam K1, Pashaiefar H4, Jalili M1, Shahi F5, Jahani M1, Yaghmaie M6.
The aims of this study are to determine the replacement rate of damaged hepatocytes by donor-derived cells in sex-mismatched recipient patients with thalassemia major and to determine whether co-transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells and hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) can alleviate liver fibrosis. Ten sex-mismatched donor-recipient pairs who received co-transplantation of HSCs with mesenchymal stem cells were included in our study. Liver biopsy was performed before transplantation. Two other liver biopsies were performed between 2 and 5 years after transplantation. The specimens were studied for the presence of donor-derived epithelial cells or hepatocytes using fluorescence in situ hybridization by X- and Y-centromeric probes and immunohistochemical staining for pancytokeratin, CD45, and a hepatocyte-specific antigen. All sex-mismatched tissue samples demonstrated donor-derived hepatocyte independent of donor gender. XY-positive epithelial cells or hepatocytes accounted for 11 to 25% of the cells in histologic sections of female recipients in the first follow-up. It rose to 47-95% in the second follow-up. Although not statistically significant, four out of ten patients showed signs of improvement in liver fibrosis. Our results showed that co-transplantation of HSC with mesenchymal stem cells increases the rate of replacement of recipient hepatocytes by donor-derived cells and may improve liver fibrosis.
Hematopoietic stem cells; Liver fibrosis; Mesenchymal stem cells; Thalassemia