Ling Guo

Tsinghua University, Peping, Beijing, China

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Publications (8)32.89 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) hold profound promise in tissue repair/regeneration. However, MSCs undergo remarkable spontaneous differentiation and aging during monolayer culture expansion. In this study, we found that 2-3 days of three-dimensional (3D) spheroid culture of human MSCs (hMSCs) that had been expanded in monolayer for six passages increased their clonogenicity and differentiation potency to neuronal cells. Moreover, in accordance with these changes, the expression levels of miRNA which were involved in stem cell potency were changed and levels of histone H3 acetylation in K9 in promoter regions of Oct4, Sox2 and Nanog were elevated. Our results indicate that spheroid culture increases their multi-potency and changes the epigenetic status of pluripotent genes in hMSCs.
    Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine 08/2014; · 4.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Intravascular injection of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has been found to cause considerable vascular obstructions which may lead to serious outcomes, particularly after intra-arterial injection. However, the underlying mechanisms have been poorly understood. In this study, we fractionated MSCs that had been cultured in monolayer for six passages into small (average diameter = 17.9 μm) and large (average diameter 30.4 μm) populations according to their sizes, and examined their vascular obstructions after intra-internal carotid artery injection in rats and mice in comparison with MSCs derived from 3D spheroids which were uniformly smaller in size (average diameter 12.6 μm). We found that 3D MSCs did not cause detectable infarct in the brain as evidenced by MRI scan and TTC stain, 2D MSCs in small size caused a microinfarct in one of five animals, which was co-localized to the area of entrapped MSCs (labeled with DiI), while 2D MSCs in large size caused much larger infarcts in all five animals, and substantial amounts of DiI-positive MSCs were found in the infarct. Meanwhile, corresponding neurological defects were observed in the animals with stroke. In consistence, injection of 2D MSCs (average diameter 26.5) caused a marked loss of cortical neurons and their axons in Thy1-GFP transgenic mice and the activation of microglia in CX3CR1-GFP transgenic mice in the area with MSC entrapment. Our results suggest that the size of MSCs is a significant cause of MSC caused vascular obstructions and stroke.
    Stem cell reviews 01/2014; · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The therapeutic effect of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in tissue repair/regeneration is substantially dampened by loss of primitive properties and poor engraftment to target organs due to inappropriate culture expansion and administration. In this study, the multipotency and cell size of human MSCs, which had been expanded in monolayer culture for several passages, were dramatically restored after an episode of 3D spheroid culture. Unlike MSCs derived from monolayer, which caused embolism and blindness, MSCs derived from 3D spheroids did not cause vascular obstruction, after intra-carotid artery infusion in rats. Importantly, intra-carotid infusion of one million 3D spheroid MSCs in rats 24 h after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) and reperfusion resulted in substantial engraftment of the cells into the lesion and significant (over 70%) reduction of infarct size along with restoration of neurologic function. Moreover, the enhanced effect of spheroid MSCs was coincided with significantly increased differentiation of the MSCs into neurons and markedly increased number of endogenous GFAP-positive neural progenitors in the peri-infarct boundary zone. However, the similarly administered monolayer MSCs resulted in a modest functional improvement. Our results suggest that 3D MSCs, in combination with intra-carotid delivery, may represent a novel therapeutic approach of MSCs for stroke.
    Stem cells and development 12/2013; · 4.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Rat middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model is the most commonly used animal model in ischemic stroke studies. In the model, to increase the amount of stem cells or drugs to enter the brain after delivery into the internal carotid artery (ICA), the pterygopalatine artery (PPA) is occluded. However, PPA occlusion is a technically demanding procedure which often causes complications. In this study, we developed an ICA injection needle to facilitate easy and efficient delivery of stem cells to the ischemic brain through the ICA without the need of PPA occlusion. We injected methylene blue and fluorescence dye DiI-labeled human mesenchymal stem cells (DiI-hMSCs) into the ICA in rats with the ICA injection needle (without PPA ligation) or the conventional micro-injection needle (with PPA ligation) and assessed their distributions. When methylene blue was injected, evident blue stains were found in the brain of the injection side particularly the middle cerebral artery (MCA)-supplied areas but not in the PPA supplied areas. Similarly, when DiI-hMSCs were injected, the cells largely appeared in the MCA-supplied tissues, which were similar in quantity compared to conventional micro-injection needle injection with PPA occlusion. Moreover, hMSCs injected with the ICA needle or the micro-injection needle similarly improved the functional recovery of the infarcted brain. Our results indicate that the ICA injection needle is easy to use and efficient in delivering cells to the ischemic brain tissue in rat MCAO model.
    Stem Cell Research & Therapy 09/2013; 4(5):116. · 3.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been considered as ideal cells for the treatment of a variety of diseases. However, aging and spontaneous differentiation of MSCs during culture expansion dampen their effectiveness. Previous studies suggest that ex vivo aging of MSCs is largely caused by epigenetic changes particularly a decline of histone H3 acetylation levels in promoter regions of pluripotent genes due to inappropriate growth environment. In this study, we examined whether histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A (TSA) could suppress the histone H3 deacetylation thus maintaining the primitive property of MSCs. We found that in regular adherent culture, human MSCs became flatter and larger upon successive passaging, while the expression of pluripotent genes such as Oct4, Sox2, Nanog, Rex-1, CD133 and TERT decreased markedly. Administration of low concentrations of TSA in culture significantly suppressed the morphological changes in MSCs otherwise occurred during culture expansion, increased their proliferation while retaining their cell contact growth inhibition property and multipotent differentiation ability. Moreover, TSA stabilized the expression of the above pluripotent genes and histone H3 acetylation levels in K9 and K14 in promoter regions of Oct4, Sox2 and TERT. Our results suggest that TSA may serve as an effective culture additive to maintain the primitive feature of MSCs during culture expansion.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(11):e81781. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Xenotransplantation of human cells into immunodeficiency mice has been frequently used to study stem cells in tissue repair and regeneration and cancer cell metastasis. However, a sensitive and reproducible method to quantify cell engraftment lacks. Here, we developed a Real-Time PCR-based method which facilitated consistent detection and quantification of small amounts of human cells distributed in mouse organs after infusion. The principle of the method was to directly detect a humans-specific sequence in the human-murine genomic DNA mixture. In a mouse myocardial infarction model, the Real-Time PCR-based method consistently determined the amounts of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) engrafted into the heart and other organs 7 days after infusion of as little as 2.5 × 10(5) cells, indicating a high sensitivity, and the amounts of hMSCs detected in mice highly correlated to the numbers of hMSCs transplanted. Importantly, different from previous PCR-based methods, our method produced highly consistent and reproducible results. The reliability of the method was further proven by parallel analyses of DiI-labeled hMSCs in tissue sections and in single cell suspensions of mice. Our data show that the present human genomic DNA-specific primers-based Real-Time PCR method is sensitive and highly reproducible in determining the amount of xenotransplanted human cells in murine tissues.
    Stem cell reviews 09/2012; · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are short non-coding RNAs involved in post-trascriptional regulation of gene expression and diverse biological activities. They are crucial for self-renewal and behavior of embryonic stem cells, but their role in mesenchymal stem cells has been poorly understood. Recently emerging evidence suggests that miRNAs are closely involved in controlling key steps of mesenchymal stem cell differentiation into certain cell lineages. This review focuses on miRNAs identified recently that regulate mesenchymal stem cell differentiation and other activities.
    Experimental hematology 02/2011; 39(6):608-16. · 3.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) hold great promise for the treatment of difficult diseases. As MSCs represent a rare cell population, ex vivo expansion of MSCs is indispensable to obtain sufficient amounts of cells for therapies and tissue engineering. However, spontaneous differentiation and aging of MSCs occur during expansion and the molecular mechanisms involved have been poorly understood. Human MSCs in early and late passages were examined for their expression of genes involved in osteogenesis to determine their spontaneous differentiation towards osteoblasts in vitro, and of genes involved in self-renewal and proliferation for multipotent differentiation potential. In parallel, promoter DNA methylation and hostone H3 acetylation levels were determined. We found that MSCs underwent aging and spontaneous osteogenic differentiation upon regular culture expansion, with progressive downregulation of TERT and upregulation of osteogenic genes such as Runx2 and ALP. Meanwhile, the expression of genes associated with stem cell self-renewal such as Oct4 and Sox2 declined markedly. Notably, the altered expression of these genes were closely associated with epigenetic dysregulation of histone H3 acetylation in K9 and K14, but not with methylation of CpG islands in the promoter regions of most of these genes. bFGF promoted MSC proliferation and suppressed its spontaneous osteogenic differentiation, with corresponding changes in histone H3 acetylation in TERT, Oct4, Sox2, Runx2 and ALP genes. Our results indicate that histone H3 acetylation, which can be modulated by extrinsic signals, plays a key role in regulating MSC aging and differentiation.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(6):e20526. · 3.53 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

72 Citations
32.89 Total Impact Points


  • 2011–2014
    • Tsinghua University
      • School of Life Sciences
      Peping, Beijing, China
  • 2013
    • Shandong University
      Chi-nan-shih, Shandong Sheng, China