Isolation, characterization, and transduction of endometrial decidual tissue multipotent mesenchymal stromal/stem cells from menstrual blood

Biomed Res Int. 2013;2013:901821. doi: 10.1155/2013/901821. Epub 2013 Mar 31.


Mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSCs) reveal progenitor cells-like features including proliferation and differentiation capacities. One of the most historically recognized sources of MSC has been the bone marrow, while other sources recently include adipose tissue, teeth, bone, muscle, placenta, liver, pancreas, umbilical cord, and cord blood. Frequently, progenitor isolation requires traumatic procedures that are poorly feasible and associated with patient discomfort. In the attempt to identify a more approachable MSC source, we focused on endometrial decidual tissue (EDT) found within menstrual blood. Based also on recent literature findings, we hypothesized that EDT may contain heterogeneous populations including some having MSC-like features. Thus, we here sought to isolate EDT-MSC processing menstrual samples from multiple donors. Cytofluorimetric analyses revealed that resulting adherent cells were expressing mesenchymal surface markers, including CD56, CD73, CD90, CD105 and CD146, and pluripotency markers such as SSEA-4. Moreover, EDT-MSC showed a robust clonogenic potential and could be largely expanded in vitro as fibroblastoid elements. In addition, differentiation assays drove these cells towards osteogenic, adipogenic, and chondrogenic lineages. Finally, for the first time, we were able to gene modify these progenitors by a retroviral vector carrying the green fluorescent protein. From these data, we suggest that EDT-MSC could represent a new promising tool having potential within cell and gene therapy applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Lineage
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Decidua / cytology*
  • Endometrium / cytology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Menstruation / blood*
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / cytology*
  • Multipotent Stem Cells / cytology*
  • Pregnancy


  • Biomarkers