Tag Archives: kidney

Stem cell-derived kidneys connect to blood vessels when transplanted into mice

* After researchers transplanted kidney tissue generated from human induced pluripotent stem cells into a mouse kidney, the animal’s blood vessels readily connected to the human tissue.

Washington, DC (November 19, 2015) — Various research groups are collecting different types of cells and turning them into induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells that can then generate diverse types of cells and tissues in the body. Now investigators have transplanted kidney tissue made from human iPS cells into a mouse kidney, and they found that the animal’s blood vessels readily connect to the human tissue. The advance, which marks an important step towards creating a urine-producing kidney through regenerative medicine, is described in a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN).

In previous work, Ryuichi Nishinakamura, MD (Kumamoto University, in Japan) and his colleagues created 3-dimensional kidney structures from human iPS cells. In this latest work, by engineering the iPS cells to express green fluorescent protein so that they could be visualized and tracked, the researchers found that the iPS cell-derived kidney tissues were similar to those found normally in the body. Also, the team successfully transplanted the kidney structures into the kidneys of mice, where they matured further around adjacent blood vessels and formed a filtration membrane structure similar to that of a normal kidney.

“We are now working to create a discharge path for the kidney and combine it with our findings,” said Prof. Nishinakamura.

In addition to their potential for regenerative medicine, such kidney structures may help scientists model kidney development, investigate the causes of kidney disease, and assess drugs’ toxicity to the kidneys.

Stem Cells Show Promise in Extending Transplanted Kidneys’ Survival Time

Can stem cells provide an answer to the perplexing question of how to ensure long-term survival of transplanted kidneys? The results of a new Phase 1 clinical trial say maybe so. Details of the trial, conducted by researchers at Leiden University Medical Center, The Netherlands, are published in the current issue of STEM CELLS Translational Medicine.

Kidney transplants have long been the treatment of choice for many patients with end-stage renal disease, and the short-term results are excellent. But unfortunately, the viability of these kidneys over time has not improved accordingly, often due to fibrosis, which is a scarring of the transplanted organ generally caused by the immune system rejecting it.

The LUMC team, led by Marlies E.J. Reinders, M.D, Ph.D., and Ton J. Rabelink, M.D., Ph.D., decided to test whether stem cells might keep fibrosis in check. They focused on mesenchymal stromal cells, a type of stem cell found throughout the body, including in bone marrow.