Acquired or congenital disruption in enteric nervous system (ENS) development or function can lead to significant mechanical dysmotility. ENS restoration through cellular transplantation may provide a cure for enteric neuropathies. We have previously generated human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived tissue-engineered small intestine (TESI) from human intestinal organoids (HIOs). However, HIO-TESI fails to develop an ENS. The purpose of our study is to restore ENS components derived exclusively from hPSCs in HIO-TESI. hPSC-derived enteric neural crest cell (ENCC) supplementation of HIO-TESI establishes submucosal and myenteric ganglia, repopulates various subclasses of neurons, and restores neuroepithelial connections and neuron-dependent contractility and relaxation in ENCC-HIO-TESI. RNA sequencing identified differentially expressed genes involved in neurogenesis, gliogenesis, gastrointestinal tract development, and differentiated epithelial cell types when ENS elements are restored during in vivo development of HIO-TESI. Our findings validate an effective approach to restoring hPSC-derived ENS components in HIO-TESI and may implicate their potential for the treatment of enteric neuropathies.
Keywords: cells; enteric nervous system; enteric neural crest; human intestinal organoids; human pluripotent stem cells; tissue-engineered small intestine.
Published by Elsevier Inc.