Subpopulations of miniature pig mesenchymal stromal cells with different differentiation potentials differ in the expression of octamer-binding transcription factor 4 and sex determining region Y-box 2

  • Jeon, Ryounghoon (Department of Theriogenology and Biotechnology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Gyeongsang National University) ;
  • Park, Sungjo (Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Mayo Clinic) ;
  • Lee, Sung-Lim (Department of Theriogenology and Biotechnology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Gyeongsang National University) ;
  • Rho, Gyu-Jin (Department of Theriogenology and Biotechnology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Gyeongsang National University)
  • Received : 2019.05.23
  • Accepted : 2019.09.03
  • Published : 2020.03.01


Objective: Human mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) exhibit variable differentiation potential and can be divided accordingly into distinct subpopulations whose ratios vary with donor age. However, it is unknown whether the same is true in pigs. This study investigated MSC subpopulations in miniature pig and compared their characteristics in young (2 to 3 months) and adult (27 to 35 months) pigs. Methods: Osteogenic, chondrogenic, and adipogenic capacity of isolated MSCs was evaluated by von Kossa, Alcian blue, and oil red O staining, respectively. Cell surface antigen expression was determined by flow cytometry. Proliferative capacity was assessed with the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay. Expression of marker genes was detected by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Results: Porcine MSCs comprised cells with trilineage and bilineage differentiation potential (tMSCs and bMSCs, respectively) and non-differentiating stromal cells (NDSCs). The tMSC and bMSC fractions were smaller in adult than in young pigs (63.0% vs 71.2% and 11.6% vs 24.0%, respectively, p<0.05); NDSCs showed the opposite trend (25.4% vs 4.8%; p<0.05). Subpopulations showed no differences in morphology, cell surface antigen expression, or proliferative capacity, but octamer-binding transcription factor 4 (OCT4) expression was higher in tMSCs than in bMSCs and NDSCs (p<0.05), whereas sex determining region Y-box 2 (SOX2) expression was higher in tMSCs and bMSCs than in NDSCs (p<0.05). Aging had no effect on these trends. Conclusion: Porcine MSCs comprise distinct subpopulations that differ in their differentiation potential and OCT4 and SOX2 expression. Aging does not affect the characteristics of each subpopulation but alters their ratios.


Supported by : National Research Foundation (NRF)


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