Behaviour of adipose-derived canine mesenchymal stem cells after superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles labelling for magnetic resonance imaging
Background: Therapy with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has been reported to provide beneficial effects in the treatment of neurological and orthopaedic disorders in dogs. The exact mechanism of action is poorly understood. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) gives the opportunity to observe MSCs after clinical administration. To visualise MSCs with ... the help of MRI, labelling with an MRI contrast agent is necessary. However, it must be clarified whether there is any negative influence on cell function and viability after labelling prior to clinical administration. Results: For the purpose of the study, seven samples with canine adipose-derived stem cells were incubated with superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIO: 319.2 µg/mL Fe) for 24 h. The internalisation of the iron particles occurred via endocytosis. SPIO particles were localized as free clusters in the cytoplasm or within lysosomes depending on the time of investigation. The efficiency of the labelling was investigated using Prussian blue staining and MACS assay. After 3 weeks the percentage of SPIO labelled canine stem cells decreased. Phalloidin staining showed no negative effect on the cytoskeleton. Labelled cells underwent osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation. Chondrogenic differentiation occurred to a lesser extent compared with a control sample. MTT-Test and wound healing assay showed no influence of labelling on the proliferation. The duration of SPIO labelling was assessed using a 1 Tesla clinical MRI scanner and T2 weighted turbo spin echo and T2 weighted gradient echo MRI sequences 1, 2 and 3 weeks after labelling. The hypointensity caused by SPIO lasted for 3 weeks in both sequences. Conclusions: An Endorem labelling concentration of 319.2 µg/mL Fe (448 µg/mL SPIO) had no adverse effects on the viability of canine ASCs. Therefore, this contrast agent could be used as a model for iron oxide labelling agents. However, the tracking ability in vivo has to be evaluated in further studies.