Research has focused on in vitro expansion of bone marrow stromal cells with the aim of developing cell-based therapies or tissue-engineered constructs. There is debate over whether there is a reduction in stem cells/osteoprogenitors in the bone marrow compartment with increasing age. The aim of this study was to investigate patient factors that affect the progenitor pool in bone marrow samples. Six milliliters of marrow aspirate was obtained from the femoral canal of 38 primary hip replacement patients (aged 28-91). Outcome measures were total nucleated cell count, colony-forming efficiency, alkaline phosphatase expression, and expression of stem cell markers. There was a nonsignificant negative correlation between age and both colony-forming efficiency and stem cell marker expression. However, body mass index showed a positive, significant correlation with colony area and number in men-accounting for up to 75% of the variation. In conclusion, body mass index, not age, was highly predictive of the number of progenitors found in bone marrow, and this relationship was sex specific. These results may inform the clinician's treatment choice when considering bone marrow-based therapies. Further, it highlights the need to widen research into patient factors that affect the adult stem cell population beyond age and reinforces the need to consider sexes separately.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering