Stem Cell Reviews and Reports

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 474–486

Immunomodulation in Stem Cell Differentiation into Neurons and Brain Repair


DOI: 10.1007/s12015-014-9556-6

Cite this article as:
Ulrich, H., do Nascimento, I.C., Bocsi, J. et al. Stem Cell Rev and Rep (2015) 11: 474. doi:10.1007/s12015-014-9556-6


Immunomodulators regulate stem cell activity at all stages of development as well as during adulthood. Embryonic stem cell (ESC) proliferation as well as neurogenic processes during embryonic development are controlled by factors of the immune system. We review here immunophenotypic expression patterns of  different stem cell types, including ESC, neural (NSC) and tissue-specific mesenchymal stem cells (MSC), and focus on immunodulatory properties of these cells. Immune and inflammatory responses, involving actions of cytokines as well as toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling are known to affect the differentiation capacity of NSC and MSC. Secretion of pro- and anti-inflammatory messengers by MSC have been observed as the consequence of TLR and cytokine activation and promotion of differentiation into specified phenotypes. As result of augmented differentiation capacity, stem cells secrete angiogenic factors including vascular endothelial growth factor, resulting in multifactorial actions in tissue repair. Immunoregulatory properties of tissue specific adult stem cells are put into the context of possible clinical applications.


Stem cells Phenotypic marker expression Neurogenesis Immunomodulation Cytokines 



Embryonic stem cells


Hematopoietic stem cells


Mesenchymal stem cells


Neural progenitor cells


Neural stem cells

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de Bioquímica, Instituto de QuímicaUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Heart Center Leipzig, Department of Pediatric Cardiology, Cardiac CentreUniversity of LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  3. 3.Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine (TRM)University of LeipzigLeipzigGermany

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