Theranostics 2017; 7(5):1225-1244. doi:10.7150/thno.18181

Research Paper

Recipient Glycemic Micro-environments Govern Therapeutic Effects of Mesenchymal Stem Cell Infusion on Osteopenia

Bing-Dong Sui1,3*, Cheng-Hu Hu1,2*, Chen-Xi Zheng1,3, Yi Shuai1,3, Xiao-Ning He1,2, Ping-Ping Gao1,2, Pan Zhao1,2, Meng Li1, Xin-Yi Zhang1,3, Tao He1,3, Kun Xuan1,3, Yan Jin1,3✉

1. State Key Laboratory of Military Stomatology & National Clinical Research Center for Oral Diseases & Shaanxi International Joint Research Center for Oral Diseases, Center for Tissue Engineering, School of Stomatology, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710032, China;
2. Xi'an Institute of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710032, China;
3. Research and Development Center for Tissue Engineering, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710032, China.
* Bing-Dong Sui and Cheng-Hu Hu contributed equally to this work.


Therapeutic effects of mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) infusion have been revealed in various human disorders, but impacts of diseased micro-environments are only beginning to be noticed. Donor diabetic hyperglycemia is reported to impair therapeutic efficacy of stem cells. However, whether recipient diabetic condition also affects MSC-mediated therapy is unknown. We and others have previously shown that MSC infusion could cure osteopenia, particularly in ovariectomized (OVX) mice. Here, we discovered impaired MSC therapeutic effects on osteopenia in recipient type 1 diabetes (T1D). Through intensive glycemic control by daily insulin treatments, therapeutic effects of MSCs on osteopenia were maintained. Interestingly, by only transiently restoration of recipient euglycemia using single insulin injection, MSC infusion could also rescue T1D-induced osteopenia. Conversely, under recipient hyperglycemia induced by glucose injection in OVX mice, MSC-mediated therapeutic effects on osteopenia were diminished. Mechanistically, recipient hyperglycemic micro-environments reduce anti-inflammatory capacity of MSCs in osteoporotic therapy through suppressing MSC interaction with T cells via the Adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) pathway. We further revealed in diabetic micro-environments, double infusion of MSCs ameliorated osteopenia by anti-inflammation, attributed to the first transplanted MSCs which normalized the recipient glucose homeostasis. Collectively, our findings uncover a previously unrecognized role of recipient glycemic conditions controlling MSC-mediated therapy, and unravel that fulfillment of potent therapeutic effects of MSCs requires tight control of recipient micro-environments.

Keywords: Mesenchymal stem cells, cell therapy, recipient, glycemic micro-environment, osteopenia, anti-inflammation.

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How to cite this article:
Sui BD, Hu CH, Zheng CX, Shuai Y, He XN, Gao PP, Zhao P, Li M, Zhang XY, He T, Xuan K, Jin Y. Recipient Glycemic Micro-environments Govern Therapeutic Effects of Mesenchymal Stem Cell Infusion on Osteopenia. Theranostics 2017; 7(5):1225-1244. doi:10.7150/thno.18181. Available from