Mesenchymal and hematopoietic tissues are important reservoirs of adult stem cells. The potential of tissue resident mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to differentiate into cells of mesodermal and ectodermal lineages has been reported previously. We examined the hypothesis that adherent adipose tissue resident mesenchymal stem cells (ASCs) are capable of generating cells with hematopoietic characteristics. When cultured in differentiation media, clonally isolated ASCs develop into cells with hematopoietic attributes. The hematopoietic differentiated cells (HD) express early hematopoietic (c-kit, PROM1, CD4) as well as monocyte/macrophage markers (CCR5, CD68, MRC1, CD11b, CSF1R). Additionally, HD cells display functional characteristics of monocyte/macrophages such as phagocytosis and enzymatic activity of α-Naphthyl Acetate Esterase. HD cells are also responsive to stimulation by IL-4 and LPS as shown by increased CD14 and HLA-DRB1 expressions and release of IL-2, IL10, and TNF. Taken together, this study characterizes the potential of ASCs to generate functional macrophages in vitro, and therefore paves way for their possible use in cell therapy applications.
© 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.