Interaction of allogeneic adipose tissue-derived stromal cells and unstimulated immune cells in vitro: the impact of cell-to-cell contact and hypoxia in the local milieu
Multipotent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are an attractive tool for cell therapy and regenerative medicine. Being applied in vivo, allogeneic MSCs are faced with both activated and unstimulated immune cells. The effects of MSCs on activated immune cells are well described and are mainly suppressive. Less is known about the interaction of MSCs with unstimulated immune cells. We evaluated the contribution of tissue-related O2 level (“physiological” hypoxia—5% O2) and cell-to-cell contact to the interaction between allogeneic adipose tissue-derived MSCs (ASCs) and unstimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). Under both O2 levels, ASCs affected the immune response by elevating the proportion of CD69+ T cells and modifying the functional activity of unstimulated PBMCs, providing a significant reduction of ROS level and activation of lysosome compartment. “Physiological” hypoxia partially attenuated the ASC modulation of PBMC function, reducing CD69+ cell activation and more significantly supressing ROS. In direct co-culture, the ASC effects were more pronounced. PBMC viability was preferentially maintained, and the lymphocyte subset ratio was altered in favour of B cells. Our findings demonstrate that allogeneic ASCs do not enhance the activation of unstimulated immune cells and can provide supportive functions. The “hypoxic” phenotype of ASCs may be more “desirable” for the interaction with allogeneic immune cells that may be required in cell therapy protocols.
KeywordsMSC Lymphocytes Immunosuppression Cell-to-cell interaction Hypoxia Immune response
Multipotent mesenchymal stem cells
Adipose stromal cells
Peripheral blood mononuclear cells
Mixed lymphocyte reaction
5,6-carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester
The study was funded by Programme of Presidium of Russian Academy of Sciences “Integrative physiology” and Grant of the President of the Russian Federation SP-3502.2015.4.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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