Mesenchymal stem cells and insulin-like growth factor-I gene-enhanced mesenchymal stem cells improve structural aspects of healing in equine flexor digitorum superficialis tendons

Authors

  • Lauren V. Schnabel,

    1. Comparative Orthopaedics Laboratory, Department of Clinical Sciences, C3-187 Veterinary Medical Center, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
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  • Maureen E. Lynch,

    1. Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
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  • Marjolein C.H. van der Meulen,

    1. Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
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  • Amy E. Yeager,

    1. Section of Veterinary Imaging, Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
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  • Matthew A. Kornatowski,

    1. Comparative Orthopaedics Laboratory, Department of Clinical Sciences, C3-187 Veterinary Medical Center, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
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  • Alan J. Nixon

    Corresponding author
    1. Comparative Orthopaedics Laboratory, Department of Clinical Sciences, C3-187 Veterinary Medical Center, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853
    • Comparative Orthopaedics Laboratory, Department of Clinical Sciences, C3-187 Veterinary Medical Center, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853. T: 607-253-3050; F: 607-253-3497.
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Abstract

Tendinitis remains a catastrophic injury among athletes. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have recently been investigated for use in the treatment of tendinitis. Previous work has demonstrated the value of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) to stimulate cellular proliferation and tendon fiber deposition in the core lesion of tendinitis. This study examined the effects of MSCs, as well as IGF-I gene-enhanced MSCs (AdIGF-MSCs) on tendon healing in vivo. Collagenase-induced bilateral tendinitis lesions were created in equine flexor digitorum superficialis tendons (SDFT). Tendons were treated with 10 × 106 MSCs or 10 × 106 AdIGF-MSCs. Control limbs were injected with 1 mL of phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). Ultrasound examinations were performed at t = 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8 weeks. Horses were euthanized at 8 weeks and SDFTs were mechanically tested to failure and evaluated for biochemical composition and histologic characteristics. Expression of collagen types I and III, IGF-I, cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP), matrix metalloproteinase-3 (MMP-3), matrix metalloproteinase-13 (MMP-13), and aggrecanase-1 (ADAMTS-4) were similar in MSC and control tendons. Both MSC and AdIGF-MSC injection resulted in significantly improved tendon histological scores. These findings indicate a benefit to the use of MSCs and AdIGF-MSCs for the treatment of tendinitis. © 2009 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 27:1392–1398, 2009

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