Short Peptides Protect Oral Stem Cells from Ageing

Stem Cell Rev Rep. 2020 Feb;16(1):159-166. doi: 10.1007/s12015-019-09921-3.


Primary stem cells, after several cell divisions, enter into a senescence state, that is characterized by alterations to spindle-shape typical morphology. This concern is one of the main problems in the use of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) in clinical applications which demand cells in large numbers. Short peptides had geroprotective properties and stimulated stem cell differentiation. The aim of the study is to demonstrate the role of AEDG and KED peptides in maintaining oral hMSCs morphology and functions over long-term expansion. 2 types of hMSCs were investigated: human periodontal ligament stem cells (hPLSCs) and human gingival mesenchymal stem cells (hGMSCs). Cells at the 25th passage were divided into 3 groups: 1 - control (without adding peptide), 2 - treated with AEDG peptide, 3 - treated with KED peptide. Cell cultures were analyzed by an immunofluorescence method and RT-PCR on the p16 and p21 senescence markers expression. AEDG peptide decreased p16 and p21 mRNA expression by 1.56-2.44 times in comparison with the control group. KED peptide decreased p16 and p21 mRNA expression by 1.82-3.23 times in comparison with the control group. These results were confirmed by immunofluorescent visualization. AEDG and KED peptides could be used as supplementary substances in a culture medium to delay the expression of senescence markers in long term stem cell cultivation in order to promote the large-scale in vitro expansion necessarily required for stem cell therapy clinical application. The data obtained confirm the geroprotective effect of AEDG and KED peptide, which was shown early in animal and cells models.

Keywords: AEDG peptide; Cell senescence; Geroprotection; KED peptide; Stem cells; p16; p21.

MeSH terms

  • Aging / drug effects*
  • Aging / genetics
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cellular Senescence / genetics*
  • Gingiva / cytology*
  • Gingiva / growth & development
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / cytology
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / drug effects
  • Peptides / pharmacology
  • Periodontal Ligament / cytology*
  • Periodontal Ligament / growth & development


  • Peptides