The neuroprotective effects of human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells are dose-dependent in TNBS colitis

Robinson, Ainsley, Rahman, Ahmed, Miller, S, Stavely, Rhian, Sakkal, Samy ORCID: 0000-0003-0430-4012 and Nurgali, Kulmira ORCID: 0000-0002-2597-6929 (2017) The neuroprotective effects of human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells are dose-dependent in TNBS colitis. Stem Cell Research and Therapy, 8 (1). ISSN 1757-6512


The incidence of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) is increasing worldwide with patients experiencing severe impacts on their quality of life. It is well accepted that intestinal inflammation associates with extensive damage to the enteric nervous system (ENS), which intrinsically innervates the gastrointestinal tract and regulates all gut functions. Hence, treatments targeting the enteric neurons are plausible for alleviating IBD and associated complications. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are gaining wide recognition as a potential therapy for many diseases due to their immunomodulatory and neuroprotective qualities. However, there is a large discrepancy regarding appropriate cell doses used in both clinical trials and experimental models of disease. We have previously demonstrated that human bone marrow MSCs exhibit neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects in a Guinea-pig model of 2,4,6-trinitrobenzene-sulfonate (TNBS)-induced colitis; but an investigation into whether this response is dose-dependent has not been conducted. Methods: Hartley Guinea-pigs were administered TNBS or sham treatment intra-rectally. Animals in the MSC treatment groups received either 1 × 10 5 , 1 × 10 6 or 3 × 10 6 MSCs by enema 3 hours after induction of colitis. Colon tissues were collected 72 hours after TNBS administration to assess the effects of MSC treatments on the level of inflammation and damage to the ENS by immunohistochemical and histological analyses. Results: MSCs administered at a low dose, 1 × 10 5 cells, had little or no effect on the level of immune cell infiltrate and damage to the colonic innervation was similar to the TNBS group. Treatment with 1 × 10 6 MSCs decreased the quantity of immune infiltrate and damage to nerve processes in the colonic wall, prevented myenteric neuronal loss and changes in neuronal subpopulations. Treatment with 3 × 10 6 MSCs had similar effects to 1 × 10 6 MSC treatments. Conclusions: The neuroprotective effect of MSCs in TNBS colitis is dose-dependent. Increasing doses higher than 1 × 10 6 MSCs demonstrates no further therapeutic benefit than 1 × 10 6 MSCs in preventing enteric neuropathy associated with intestinal inflammation. Furthermore, we have established an optimal dose of MSCs for future studies investigating intestinal inflammation, the enteric neurons and stem cell therapy in this model.

Dimensions Badge

Altmetric Badge

Item type Article
DOI 10.1186/s13287-017-0540-3
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1103 Clinical Sciences
Historical > FOR Classification > 1107 Immunology
Historical > FOR Classification > 1109 Neurosciences
Current > Division/Research > College of Health and Biomedicine
Keywords Inflammatory bowel disease; Intestinal inflammation; Mesenchymal stem cells; Enteric neurons; Dose-dependence
Citations in Scopus 20 - View on Scopus
Download/View statistics View download statistics for this item

Search Google Scholar

Repository staff login