Osteogenic Differentiation of Human and Ovine Bone Marrow Stromal Cells in response to β-Glycerophosphate and Monosodium Phosphate.
It is expected that use of adult multipotential mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for bone tissue engineering (TE) will lead to improvement of TE products. Prior to clinical application, biocompatibility of bone TE products need to be tested in vitro and in vivo. In orthopedic research, sheep are a well-accepted model due to similarities with humans and are assumed to be predictive of human outcomes. In this study we uncover differences between human and ovine bone marrow-derived MSCs (BMSCs) and adipose tissue-derived MSCs (ADSCs) in response to osteogenic media. Osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs and ADSCs was monitored by alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and calcium deposition. Mineralization of ovine BMSC was achieved in medium containing NaH2PO4 as a source of phosphate ions (Pi), but not in medium containing β-glycerophosphate (β-GP), which is most often used. In a detailed study we found no induction of ALP activity in ovine BMSCs and ADSCs upon osteogenic stimulation, which makes β-GP an unsuitable source of phosphate ions for ovine cells. Moreover, mineralization of human ADSCs was more efficient in osteogenic medium containing NaH2PO4. These results indicate major differences between ovine and human MSCs and suggest that standard in vitro osteogenic differentiation techniques may not be suitable for all types of cells used in cell-based therapies. Since mineralization is a widely accepted marker of the osteogenic differentiation and maturation of cells in culture, it may lead to potentially misleading results and should be taken into account at the stage of planning and interpreting preclinical observations performed in animal models. We also present a cell culture protocol for ovine ADSCs, which do not express ALP activity and do not mineralize under routine pro-osteogenic conditions in vitro. We plan to apply it in preclinical experiments of bone tissue-engineered products performed in an ovine model.