Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent stromal cells with a strong potential in human regenerative medicine due to their ability to renew themselves and differentiate into various specialized cell types under certain physiological or experimental conditions. MSCs secrete a broad spectrum of autocrine and paracrine factors (MSCs’ secretome) that could exert significant effects on cells in their vicinity. MSCs have been clinically tested and have displayed a great potential in the treatment of bone/cartilage fractures and disorders, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and immune, neurodegenerative and inflammatory diseases. The therapeutic efficacy of MSCs was initially attributed to their multipotent character and ability to engraft and differentiate at the site of injury. However, in recent years, it has been revealed that either undifferentiated or differentiated MSCs’ secretome plays an important role in the therapeutic potential of MSCs. The deciphering of the composition of MSCs’ secretome through proteomic and metabolic analyses and implementation of certain advanced analytical (nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, mass spectrometry (MS), chromatography, etc.) and immunological methods could contribute to the understanding of the mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of MSCs.
Part of the book: Metabolomics