Researchers take a step forward in transplanting pig cells to regenerate human cartilage
Researchers from the Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL) have studied for the first time the response of human NK cells (Natural Killer) against porcine chondrocytes (cartilage cells).
The results of the research, published in The Journal of Immunology, indicate that these cells, characteristic of the innate immune system, play an important role in the rejection of xenotransplantation (transplantation from another species) of porcine chondrocytes.
Together with neutrophils and macrophages, NK cells are part of the first line of cellular defence and they are involved in not-acquired immune response, that is the innate response. NK cells are responsible for identifying specific cell types (tumour, infection or foreign to the body) and destroying them by toxicity.
The number of NK cells is a minority, but their importance is increasing in the field of transplantation, according to the study's lead author, Cristina Costa, "we see that innate immunity plays an important role in regulating acquired immunity, which is critical for the rejection of transplanted organs".
The Costa team's goal is achieving porcine chondrocytes transplantation in humans to repair cartilage injuries. The group have studied "in vitro" the response of human NK cells in the presence of pig cells. They noted that under conditions of transplant, high presence of antibodies and cytokines, human NK cells make a cytotoxic response and they lyse (destroy) foreign cells, in this case the chondrocytes.
"In this work we have characterized several molecules involved in the processes of adhesion and cytotoxicity of NK cells," explained the researcher, who believes that this work opens the way on how to continue the investigation "on one hand we have to fight the deposition of antibodies that is a critical factor in increasing the toxicity and on the other we must work to reduce cell adhesion by modifying any of the molecules we have involved."
The next step for clinical application of cartilage xenotransplantation proposed by Costa would be "the genetic modification of porcine chondrocytes, so that human NK cells don't recognize them as foreigners, thus avoiding rejection."
Transplantation of cartilage
Cartilage transplantation between humans is not been widely applied in the clinic but it has been successful in the regeneration of this tissue in traumatic injuries, especially in athletes. Autologous transplants are performed with cells from the same person and allogenic ones, with cells from another person.
"In both cases," says Costa, "the limitation is the amount of cells available. If we can get cartilage xenotransplantation it would increase the amount and quality of the cells available for transplantation." In the future, according to the researcher, "maybe we could apply the xenotransplantation of pig chondrocytes on osteoarthritis patients or even with rheumatoid arthritis" but, warns Costa, "in these cases there are other combined inflammatory and immune processes hindering the outcome of the transplantation."
Journal reference: Journal of Immunology
Provided by IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute
- New role for natural killers Aug 27, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Natural killer cells could be key to anthrax defense Oct 27, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- 'Natural killer' cells keep immune system in balance Oct 01, 2009 | not rated yet | 0
- A new way to stimulate the immune system and fight infection Jan 20, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- 'Dirty' wild mice may be more relevant immunology model Sep 08, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Pressure-volume curve: Elastic Recoil Pressure don't make sense
May 18, 2013 From pressure-volume curve of the lung and chest wall (attached photo), I don't understand why would the elastic recoil pressure of the lung is...
If you became brain-dead, would you want them to pull the plug?
May 17, 2013 I'd want the rest of me to stay alive. Sure it's a lousy way to live but it beats being all-the-way dead. Maybe if I make it 20 years they'll...
MRI bill question
May 15, 2013 Dear PFers, The hospital gave us a $12k bill for one MRI (head with contrast). The people I talked to at the hospital tell me that they do not...
Ratio of Hydrogen of Oxygen in Dessicated Animal Protein
May 13, 2013 As an experiment, for the past few months I've been consuming at least one portion of Jell-O or unflavored Knox gelatin per day. I'm 64, in very...
Alcohol and acetaminophen
May 13, 2013 Edit: sorry for the typo in the title , can't edit I looked around on google quite a bit and it's very hard to find precise information on the...
Marie Curie's leukemia
May 13, 2013 Does anyone know what might be the cause of Marie Curie's cancer
- More from Physics Forums - Medical Sciences
More news stories
In their quest to learn more about the variability of cells between and within tissues, biomedical scientists have devised tools capable of simultaneously measuring dozens of characteristics of individual ...
Medical research 5 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
In 2008 researchers from the University of Southern Denmark showed that the drug thioridazine, which has previously been used to treat schizophrenia, is also a powerful weapon against antibiotic-resistant bacteria such as ...
Medical research May 17, 2013 | 3.7 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Scientists investigating the interaction of a group of proteins in the brain responsible for protecting nerve cells from damage have identified a new target that could increase cell survival.
Medical research May 17, 2013 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
New findings by researchers carrying out experiments at the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science's Advanced Photon Source (APS) help explain why some drugs that interact with two kinds of human serotonin ...
Medical research May 17, 2013 | 4 / 5 (1) | 0 |
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin have identified a potential new risk factor for obstructive sleep apnea: asthma. Using data from the National Institutes of Health (Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)-funded Wisconsin ...
4 hours ago | not rated yet | 0 |
A new study looking at sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) and markers for Alzheimer's disease (AD) risk in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and neuroimaging adds to the growing body of research linking the two.
4 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
Scientists at Johns Hopkins have turned their view of osteoarthritis (OA) inside out. Literally. Instead of seeing the painful degenerative disease as a problem primarily of the cartilage that cushions joints, ...
5 hours ago | 5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
Gourmands and foodies everywhere have long recognized ginger as a great way to add a little peppery zing to both sweet and savory dishes; now, a study from researchers at Columbia University shows purified components of the ...
4 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The hunt for an HIV vaccine has gobbled up $8 billion in the past decade, and the failure of the most recent efficacy trial has delivered yet another setback to 26 years of efforts.
9 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The devastating effect of Alzheimer's disease on bilingual people has been thrown into focus in Canada, where the sudden loss of a second language can leave sufferers feeling like strangers in their own country.
7 hours ago | not rated yet | 0