Mesenchymal Stem Cells Therapy for Bone & Cartilage Regeneration

Mesenchymal Stem Cells Therapy for Bone & Cartilage Regeneration

Mesenchymal Stem Cells Therapy for Bone & Cartilage Regeneration

Bone and joints of feet.

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent stem cells that emerge from the mesodermal lineage. They have the ability to differentiate into a variety of distinct cell lineages, including adipocyte, chondrocyte, and osteocyte. MSCs in therapeutic applications provide a number of benefits. The MSCs were simple to get since they could be collected from several sources, including adipose tissue, bone marrow, peripheral blood, and the placenta. Moreover, MSCs have the capacity to migrate to injured regions as a result of homing signals, reduce inflammation, and encourage tissue healing by producing certain cytokines. Furthermore, these MSCs’ capabilities have shown that they have immunomodulatory and regenerative features that hold promise for treating immune-mediated and degenerative diseases, respectively.

The inevitable aging of the population is leading to an increase in skeletal problems. Rheumatoid arthritis, intervertebral disc degeneration, osteoporosis, and osteoarthritis are the most common diseases. To stop tissue deterioration and restore damaged tissue, including bone and cartilage, conventional therapy may not be sufficient. Interesting findings have been found in pre-clinical and clinical research for such disorders by using MSCs therapy.

Mesenchymal stem cells therapy application for bone and cartilage diseases
Mesenchymal stem cells therapy application for bone and cartilage diseases

Osteoarthritis is a chronic condition characterized by osteophyte formation, thickening of the subchondral bone, and degradation of the articular cartilage. Inflammation of the knee joint is caused by chondrocytes’ inability to create enough functional matrix and by an overproduction of matrix proteases. It is interesting to note that MSC treatment has demonstrated their ability to develop into chondrocytes, healing tissue by producing collagen and matrix, lower inflammation, and providing pain relief for patients.

In osteoporosis, there is an improper balance between the processes of bone production by osteoblasts and bone resorption by osteoclasts, which leads to the breakdown of the bone microstructure and subsequently decreases bone density. Interestingly, MSCs encourage osteoblast development and suppress osteoclast cellular activity to maintain the bone microenvironment’s homeostasis.

Autoantibodies can cause the immune system-related autoimmune illness of the joints known as rheumatoid arthritis. As a result, the cartilage and bone tissue deteriorate and become inflamed. Subsequently, the bursae and tendon sheaths around it are thus impacted. By inhibiting the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines like IFN, TNF, and matrix-degrading enzymes (e.g., collagenase and gelatinase), MSCs treatment promotes immunological modulation. Moreover, they lessen joint edema, inflammation, and cartilage degeneration.

Spinal cord and skeleton drawings of skull, hands and legs.

Intervertebral disc degeneration is a degenerative condition associated with age that alters the structure of the intervertebral disc, particularly the vertebral end-plate, causing pathological structural change and back discomfort in patients. Physiotherapy, medication, and surgery are examples of traditional treatments. However, the underlying cause of disc degeneration may still persist despite these treatments. MSCs have been shown in numerous studies to have the potential to stop the degeneration of intervertebral discs by replacing damaged structures with new functional cells, allowing the reconstruction of lost structures. Moreover, they also release a variety of cytokines to lessen inflammation and apoptosis and regenerate the disc microenvironment.

In conclusion, the aging society has resulted in a rise in the incidence of bone and cartilage degenerative diseases. Despite the possibility that the conventional approach may not be sufficient, MSCs therapy has revealed its potential, including immunomodulatory and regenerative capabilities for prospective MSCs clinical use.


  1. Ding DC, Shyu WC, Lin SZ. Mesenchymal stem cells. Cell Transplant. 2011; 20(1): 5-14.
  2. Kangari P, Talaei-Khozani T, Razeghian-Jahromi I, Razmkhah M. Mesenchymal stem cells: amazing remedies for bone and cartilage defects. Stem Cell Res Ther. 2020; 11(1): 492.
  3. Molnar V, Pavelić E, Vrdoljak K, et al. Mesenchymal Stem Cell Mechanisms of Action and Clinical Effects in Osteoarthritis: A Narrative Review. Genes (Basel). 2022; 13(6): 949.
  4. Li Y, Wei X, Zhou J, Wei L. The age-related changes in cartilage and osteoarthritis. Biomed Res Int. 2013; 2013: 916530.



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