Impact of timing and dose of mesenchymal stromal cell therapy in a preclinical model of acute myocardial infarction

J Card Fail. 2013 May;19(5):342-53. doi: 10.1016/j.cardfail.2013.03.011.


Background: Although mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC) have shown therapeutic promise after myocardial infarction (MI), the impact of cell dose and timing of intervention remains uncertain. We compared immediate and deferred administration of 2 doses of MSC in a rat model of MI.

Methods and results: Sprague-Dawley rats were used. Allogeneic prospectively isolated MSC ("low" dose 1 × 10(6) or "high" dose 2 × 10(6) cells) were delivered by transepicardial injection immediately after MI ("early-low," "early-high"), or 1 week later ("late-low," "late-high"). Control subjects received cryopreservant solution alone. Left ventricular dimensions and ejection fraction (EF) were assessed by cardiac magnetic resonance. All 4 MSC-treatment cohorts demonstrated higher EF than control animals 4 weeks after MI (P values <.01 to <.0001), with function most preserved in the early-high group (absolute reduction in EF from baseline: control 39.1 ± 1.7%, early-low 26.5 ± 3.2%, early-high 7.9 ± 2.6%, late-low 19.6 ± 3.5%, late-high 17.9 ± 4.0%). Cell treatment also attenuated left ventricular dilatation and fibrosis and augmented left ventricular mass, systolic wall thickening (SWT), and microvascular density. Although early intervention selectively increased SWT and vascular density in the infarct territory, delayed treatment caused greater benefit in remote (noninfarct) myocardium. All outcomes demonstrated dose dependence for early MSC treatment, but not for later cell administration.

Conclusions: The nature and magnitude of benefit from MSC after acute MI is strongly influenced by timing of cell delivery, with dose dependence most evident for early intervention. These novel insights have potential implications for cell therapy after MI in human patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arterioles / pathology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Fibrosis / pathology
  • Heart Ventricles / pathology
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine
  • Male
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Myocardial Infarction / therapy*
  • Myocardium / pathology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Stroke Volume
  • Time-to-Treatment
  • Ventricular Function, Left