Stem Cell Reviews and Reports

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 1–16 | Cite as

Human Wharton’s Jelly Stem Cells Have Unique Transcriptome Profiles Compared to Human Embryonic Stem Cells and Other Mesenchymal Stem Cells

  • Chui-Yee Fong
  • Li-Ling Chak
  • Arijit Biswas
  • Jee-Hian Tan
  • Kalamegam Gauthaman
  • Woon-Khiong Chan
  • Ariff Bongso
Article

Abstract

The human umbilical cord that originates from the embryo is an extra-embryonic membrane and the Wharton’s jelly within it is a rich source of stem cells (hWJSCs). It is not definitely known whether these cells behave as human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) or both. They have the unique properties of high proliferation rates, wide multipotency, hypoimmunogenicity, do not induce teratomas and have anticancer properties. These advantages are important considerations for their use in cell based therapies and treatment of cancers. In a search for properties that confer these advantages we compared a detailed transcriptome profiling of hWJSCs using DNA microarrays with that of a panel of known hESCs, hMSCs and stromal cells. hWJSCs expressed low levels of the pluripotent embryonic stem cell markers including POUF1, NANOG, SOX2 and LIN28, thus explaining why they do not produce teratomas. Several cytokines were significantly upregulated in hWJSCs including IL12A which is associated with the induction of apoptosis, thus explaining their anticancer properties. When GO Biological Process analysis was compared between the various stem cell types, hWJSCs showed an increased expression of genes associated with the immune system, chemotaxis and cell death. The ability to modulate immune responses makes hWJSCs an important compatible stem cell source for transplantation therapy in allogeneic settings without immunorejection. The data in the present study which is the first detailed report on hWJSC transcriptomes provide a foundation for future functional studies where the exact mechanisms of these unique properties of hWJSCs can be confirmed.

Keywords

DNA microarray Human Wharton’s jelly stem cells Stem cells Transcriptome 

Supplementary material

12015_2010_9166_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (55 kb)
Supplementary Table 1NCBI GEO accession numbers of samples used in the DNA microarray analyses (PDF 55 kb)
12015_2010_9166_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (199 kb)
Supplementary Table 2Pearson’s correlation coefficient results for hESCs, hECCs, hWJSCs and hFCs. (PDF 199 kb)
12015_2010_9166_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (779 kb)
Supplementary Table 3Genes significantly upregulated in hWJSCs compared to the sample classes in the analyses performed in Fig. 1b. (PDF 778 kb)
12015_2010_9166_MOESM4_ESM.pdf (186 kb)
Supplementary Table 4Genes significantly upregulated and shared between hESCs and hECCs compared to hWJSCs in Fig. 1b. (PDF 186 kb)
12015_2010_9166_MOESM5_ESM.pdf (39 kb)
Supplementary Table 5Gene Ontology Biological Process analysis as performed with DAVID for Fig. 1d. (PDF 38 kb)
12015_2010_9166_MOESM6_ESM.pdf (35 kb)
Supplementary Table 6Gene Ontology Biological Process analysis as performed with DAVID for Fig. 2d. (PDF 35 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chui-Yee Fong
    • 1
  • Li-Ling Chak
    • 2
  • Arijit Biswas
    • 1
  • Jee-Hian Tan
    • 2
  • Kalamegam Gauthaman
    • 1
  • Woon-Khiong Chan
    • 2
  • Ariff Bongso
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics and GynaecologyNational University of SingaporeKent RidgeSingapore
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesNational University of SingaporeKent RidgeSingapore
  3. 3.Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Yong Loo Lin School of MedicineNational University of SingaporeKent RidgeSingapore

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