The future of stem cells: Should we keep the “stem” and skip the “cells”?

Academic Article


  • © 2016 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery There is accumulating evidence that the cardioprotective effects of stem cells are predominantly mediated by the release of a blend of factors, possibly clustered into extracellular vesicles, which harness endogenous repair pathways. The clinical translation of this concept requires the identification of the cell-secreted signaling biomolecules and an appropriate transfer method. The study by Wei and colleagues has addressed these 2 requirements by showing that the epicardial delivery of a collagen patch loaded with the cardiokine follistatin-like 1 improved left ventricular function in animal models of myocardial infarction. Beyond the choice of the factor and its vehicle, these data may open a new therapeutic path whereby the functionalization of biomaterials by bioactive compounds could successfully substitute for the current cell transplantation–based strategy.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 3116135
  • Author List

  • Menasché P
  • Start Page

  • 345
  • End Page

  • 349
  • Volume

  • 152
  • Issue

  • 2