Adult bone marrow-derived cells do not acquire functional attributes of cardiomyocytes when transplanted into peri-infarct myocardium

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Scopus citations


The cardiomyogenic potential of adult bone marrow (BM) cells after being directly transplanted into the ischemically injured heart remains a controversial issue. In this study, we investigated the ability of transplanted BM cells to develop intracellular calcium ([Ca2+] i) transients in response to membrane depolarization in situ. Low-density mononuclear (LDM) BM cells, c-kit-enriched (c-kitenr) BM cells, and highly enriched lin- c-kit+ BM cells were obtained from adult transgenic mice ubiquitously expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), and injected into peri-infarct myocardiums of nontransgenic mice. After 9-10 days the mice were killed, and the hearts were removed, perfused in Langendorff mode, loaded with the calcium-sensitive fluorophore rhod-2, and subjected to two-photon laser scanning fluorescence microscopy (TPLSM) to monitor action potential-induced [Ca2+]i transients in EGFP-expressing donor-derived cells and non-expressing host cardiomyocytes. Whereas spontaneous and electrically evoked [Ca2+]i transients were found to occur synchronously in host cardiomyocytes along the graft-host border and in areas remote from the infarct, they were absent in all of the >3,000 imaged BM-derived cells that were located in clusters throughout the infarct scar or peri-infarct zone. We conclude that engrafted BM-derived cells lack attributes of functioning cardiomyocytes, calling into question the concept that adult BM cells can give rise to substantive cardiomyocyte regeneration within the infarcted heart.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1129-1137
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Therapy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2008


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery

Cite this