Brought to you by Portland Press Ltd.
Published on behalf of the International Federation for Cell Biology
Cancer Cell death Cell cycle Cytoskeleton Exo/endocytosis Differentiation Division Organelles Signalling Stem cells Trafficking
Cell Biology International (2010) 34, 693–701 (Printed in Great Britain)
The umbilical cord matrix is a better source of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) than the umbilical cord blood
Mustapha Zeddou*1, Alexandra Briquet*, Biserka Relic†, Claire Josse‡, Michel G. Malaise†, André Gothot*, Chantal Lechanteur§ and Yves Beguin*§
*Laboratory of Haematology, GIGA Research Centre, University of Lige, Lige, Belgium, †Laboratory of Rheumatology, GIGA Research Centre, University of Lige, Lige, Belgium, ‡Laboratory of Human Genetics, GIGA Research Centre, University of Lige, Lige, Belgium, and §Laboratory of Cell and Gene Therapy, CHU of Lige, University of Lige, Lige, Belgium


Many studies have drawn attention to the emerging role of MSC (mesenchymal stem cells) as a promising population supporting new clinical concepts in cellular therapy. However, the sources from which these cells can be isolated are still under discussion. Whereas BM (bone marrow) is presented as the main source of MSC, despite the invasive procedure related to this source, the possibility of isolating sufficient numbers of these cells from UCB (umbilical cord blood) remains controversial. Here, we present the results of experiments aimed at isolating MSC from UCB, BM and UCM (umbilical cord matrix) using different methods of isolation and various culture media that summarize the main procedures and criteria reported in the literature. Whereas isolation of MSC were successful from BM (10:10) and (UCM) (8:8), only one cord blood sample (1:15) gave rise to MSC using various culture media [DMEM (Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium) +5% platelet lysate, DMEM+10% FBS (fetal bovine serum), DMEM+10% human UCB serum, MSCGM®] and different isolation methods [plastic adherence of total MNC (mononuclear cells), CD3+/CD19+/CD14+/CD38+-depleted MNC and CD133+- or LNGFR+-enriched MNC]. MSC from UCM and BM were able to differentiate into adipocytes, osteocytes and hepatocytes. The expansion potential was highest for MSC from UCM. The two cell populations had CD90+/CD73+/CD105+ phenotype with the additional expression of SSEA4 and LNGFR for BM MSC. These results clearly exclude UCB from the list of MSC sources for clinical use and propose instead UCM as a rich, non-invasive and abundant source of MSC.


Key words: cord matrix, mesenchymal stem cell, umbilical cord blood

Abbreviations: bFGF, basic fibroblast growth factor, BM, bone marrow, DMEM, Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium, EGF, epidermal growth factor, FBS, fetal bovine serum, IMDM, Iscove's modified Dulbecco's medium, MNC, mononuclear cell, MSC, mesenchymal stem cells, UCB, umbilical cord blood, UCM, umbilical cord matrix

1To whom correspondence should be addressed (email mzeddou@hotmail.com).


Received 15 November 2009/21 February 2010; accepted 1 March 2010

Published as Cell Biology International Immediate Publication 1 March 2010, doi:10.1042/CBI20090414


© The Author(s) Journal compilation © 2010 Portland Press Limited


ISSN Print: 1065-6995
ISSN Electronic: 1095-8355
Published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the International Federation for Cell Biology (IFCB)