Human MSCs from Bone Marrow, Umbilical Cord Blood, and Adipose Tissue: All the Same?

  • Patrick Wuchter
  • Anthony D. Ho
Part of the Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine book series (STEMCELL)


In addition to bone marrow (BM), umbilical cord blood (UCB) and adipose tissue (AT) represent promising starting materials for the isolation and expansion of mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSCs). MSC preparations from these different sources are associated with distinct features and advantages: Whereas MSCs derived from UCB show the best expansion potential, the highest yield of MSC can be recovered from AT. MSCs from these starting materials have been analyzed and characterized in numerous studies. Clinical trials have been activated to define their roles in a variety of disorders. However, no specific cellular markers or marker constellation for MSCs have yet been identified. MSC preparations derived from various protocols are highly heterogeneous and differ widely in their functional properties. It is therefore essential to develop universal criteria for the quality control of starting cell populations as well as for the cell products after expansion. For clinical use, it is also advisable to use well-defined and, preferably, serum-free culture media under current good manufacturing practice conditions.


Mesenchymal Stem Cell Umbilical Cord Blood Multipotent Mesenchymal Stromal Cell Multipotent Adult Progenitor Cell Unrestricted Somatic Stem Cell 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) within the supporting program “cell-based regenerative medicine” (START-MSC2) and the German Research Foundation DFG (SFB 873). We thank Anke Diehlmann for excellent technical assistance in cell culture and Dr. Rainer Saffrich for outstanding image acquisition.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineHeidelberg UniversityHeidelbergGermany

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