A new method for inducing mesenchymal stem cells from iPS cells without using animal-derived components

A group led by Associate Professor Makoto Ikeya has established a new method to generate mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from iPS cells via neural crest cells (NCCs) without animal-derived elements. It is expected to be used for cell therapy with MSC.

MSCs are stem cells that exist in the adult body and are being used for cell transplantation in regenerative medicine for various diseases. The Makoto Ikeya laboratory previously reported a method for inducing MSCs from iPS cells, but it was not suitable for use in cell transplantation therapy because the protocol involved animal-derived components.

The research group has established a new protocol to efficiently induce differentiation from iPS cells to MSCs under conditions that were free of animal-derived substances (XF: Xeno-Free). These MSCs (XF-iMSCs) were transplanted into mice. The researchers found that the XF-iMSCs were able to regenerate bone and skeletal muscle in the mice. The XF-iMSCs not only differentiated into bone cells but also secreted factors that promoted the regeneration of surrounding cells. These results suggest that XF-iMSCs have the potential to be used in regenerative medicine.