Isolation, propagation, and characterization of human umbilical cord perivascular cells (HUCPVCs)

Methods Mol Biol. 2009;482:269-79. doi: 10.1007/978-1-59745-060-7_17.


Current sources of mesenchymal cells, including bone marrow, fat and muscle, all require invasive procurement procedures, and provide relatively low frequencies of progenitors. Here, we describe the non-invasive isolation, and characterization, of a rich source of mesenchymal progenitor cells, which we call human umbilical cord perivascular cells (HUCPVCs). HUCPVCs show a similar immunological phenotype to bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (BM-MSCs), since they are non-alloreactive, exhibit immunosuppression, and significantly reduce lymphocyte activation, in vitro. They present a non-hematopoietic myofibroblastic mesenchymal phenotype (CD45-, CD34-, CD105+, CD73+, CD90+, CD44+, CD106+, 3G5+, CD146+); with a 1:300 frequency at harvest, a short-doubling time, and a clonogenic frequency of >1:3 in culture. Furthermore, in addition to robust quinti-potential differentiation capacity in vitro, HUCPVCs have been shown to contribute to both musculo-skeletal and dermal wound healing in vivo.

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Blood Vessels / cytology*
  • Blood Vessels / metabolism
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cell Separation / methods*
  • Clone Cells
  • Desmin / metabolism
  • Dissection
  • Humans
  • Lymphocytes / cytology
  • Organ Specificity
  • Umbilical Cord / cytology*
  • Vimentin / metabolism


  • Actins
  • Desmin
  • Vimentin