Objective: This study aimed to compare the therapeutic efficacy of transplantation of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUCMSC) in different routes in acute hepatic failure (ALF) in rats.
Methods: hUCMSCs were isolated and identified by detection of surface antigens via flow cytometry. In T group and H group, ALF rats received hUCMSC transplantation through the tail vein and intrahepatic injection, respectively. In hUCMSC group, healthy rats received hUCMSCs transplantation via the tail vein. In ALF group, rats received injection of normal saline through the tail vein.
Results: The TBil and ALT in ALF rats with and without transplantation were significantly higher than in healthy rats (P<0.05). HE staining of the liver showed obvious hepatocyte regeneration and reduced infiltration of inflammatory cells, and liver pathology was improved in T group and H group as compared to ALF group. At 3 d after transplantation, CK18 expression was detectable in both H group and T group. At 1 w and 2 w, the mRNA expressions of CK8, CK18 and AFP in H group and T group were significantly different from those in ALF group (P<0.05). The liver function and differentiation of stem cells were comparable between H group and T group (P>0.05).
Conclusion: hUCMSCs transplantation can improve the liver function and promote the liver repair following ALF. hUCMSCs transplantation via tail vein has similar therapeutic efficacy to that through intrahepatic injection.
Keywords: Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells; acute liver failure; rat; therapy; transplantation.