Genetic Comparison of Stemness of Human Umbilical Cord and Dental Pulp

Stem Cells Int. 2016;2016:3453890. doi: 10.1155/2016/3453890. Epub 2016 Mar 21.


This study focuses on gene expression patterns and functions in human umbilical cord (UC) and dental pulp (DP) containing mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). DP tissues were collected from 25 permanent premolars. UC tissue samples were obtained from three newborns. Comparative gene profiles were obtained using cDNA microarray analysis and the expression of tooth development-associated and MSC-related genes was assessed by the quantitative real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Genes related to cell proliferation, angiogenesis, and immune responses were expressed at higher levels in UC, whereas genes related to growth factor and receptor activity and signal transduction were more highly expressed in DP. Although UC and DP tissues exhibited similar expression of surface markers for MSCs, UC showed higher expression of CD29, CD34, CD44, CD73, CD105, CD146, and CD166. qRT-PCR analysis showed that CD146, CD166, and MYC were expressed 18.3, 8.24, and 1.63 times more highly in UC, whereas the expression of CD34 was 2.15 times higher in DP. Immunohistochemical staining revealed significant differences in the expression of genes (DSPP, DMP1, and CALB1) related to odontogenesis and angiogenesis in DP. DP and UC tissue showed similar gene expression, with the usual MSC markers, while they clearly diverged in their differentiation capacity.