Mesenchymal stem cell transformation and sarcoma genesis
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are studied as a cellular source for the treatment of various diseases. In this work, we isolated and cultivated murine bone marrow-derived MSCs. After a first observation of a solid tumor in a mouse injected with these cells, we systematically explored their chromosomal stability. We observed in all the cytogenetically analyzed cases gross chromosomal alterations every time the MSCs went through the senescence crisis while the lymphocytes from the same animals showed a normal chromosome count. This observation was confirmed in different mouse strains, with different culture protocols, and even in short-term cultures after a hematopoietic cell negative immunodepletion performed in order to accelerate the isolation procedure. Therefore, we conclude that murine MSCs display high chromosomal instability and can generate tumors, and that care must be taken before using them for the evaluation of MSC therapeutic potential.