University of Illinois at Chicago
journal.pone.0035685.pdf (710.42 kB)

Mesenchymal Stem Cells Secrete Multiple Cytokines That Promote Angiogenesis and Have Contrasting Effects on Chemotaxis and Apoptosis

Download (710.42 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2012-10-02, 00:00 authored by Robert A. Boomsma, David L. Geenen
We have previously shown that mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) improve function upon integration in ischemic myocardium. We examined whether specific cytokines and growth factors produced by MSCs are able to affect angiogenesis, cellular migration and apoptosis. Conditioned media (CM) was prepared by culturing MSC for 48 hours. CM displayed significantly elevated levels of VEGF, Monocyte Chemoattractant Protein-1 (MCP-1), macrophage inflammatory protein-1a (MIP-1a), MIP- 1b and monokine induced by IFN-c (MIG) compared to control media. MSC contained RNA for these factors as detected by RT-PCR. CM was able to induce angiogenesis in canine vascular endothelial cells. MCP-1 and MIP-1a increased cell migration of MSC while VEGF reduced it. H9c2 cells treated with CM under hypoxic conditions for 24 hours displayed a 16% reduction in caspase-3 activity compared to controls. PI 3-kinase c inhibitor had no effect on controls but reversed the effect of CM on caspase-3 activity. MCP-1 alone mimicked the protective effect of CM while the PI 3-Kc inhibitor did not reverse the effect of MCP-1. CM reduced phospho-BAD (Ser112) and phospho-Akt (Ser473) while increasing phospho-Akt (Thr308). MCP-1 reduced the level of phospho-Akt (Ser473) while having no effect on the other two; the PI 3-Kc inhibitor did not alter the MCP-1 effect. ERK 1/2 phosphorylation was reduced in CM treated H9c2 cells, and inhibition of ERK 1/2 reduced the phosphorylation of Akt (Ser473), Akt (Thr308) and Bad (Ser112). In conclusion, MSC synthesize and secrete multiple paracrine factors that are able to affect MSC migration, promote angiogenesis and reduce apoptosis. While both MCP-1 and PI3-kinase are involved in the protective effect, they are independent of each other. It is likely that multiple pro-survival factors in addition to MCP-1 are secreted by MSC which act on divergent intracellular signaling pathways.


This work was support by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute RO1 HL071046


Publisher Statement

© 2012 Boomsma, Geenen. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Public Library of Science


  • en_US



Issue date


Usage metrics


    No categories selected



    Ref. manager