Stem cells are being tested as an experimental therapy for cartilage regeneration. MSCs, which are generated from umbilical cord blood, may travel to injured or inflammatory areas of the body and release a variety of regenerative factors, including vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), fibroblast growth factor (FGF), and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) (PDGF).
These may help cartilage and supporting tissue develop faster, resulting in better tissue healing. They also have a variety of additional, more subtle impacts. They may, for example, decrease the severity of inflammation and avoid an overactive immune response.
Stem cells have anti-inflammatory properties
MSCs, for example, counteract the effects of many inflammatory chemicals and boost the production of TNF-stimulated gene/protein 6 (TSG-6), a protein with several anti-inflammatory activities. This suppresses the pro-inflammatory cascade by reducing macrophage inflammatory signals.
MSCs exposed to inflammatory chemicals produced by injured tissues, such as lipopolysaccharide, TNF-, or nitric oxide, give negative feedback by producing prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). This results in a change in macrophage phenotype from pro-inflammatory to anti-inflammatory. More mechanisms, perhaps involving proteins like stanniocalcin-1, that counteract the harm produced by reactive oxygen species may be discovered (ROS).
When cartilage cells are grown with stem cells, they develop more quickly, and the extracellular matrix (ECM) they secrete around themselves is more stable and comparable to that seen in real cartilage. Infusing umbilical cord MSCs seems to be linked with the highest degree of improvement, at least in rheumatoid arthritis, based on existing information. Most stem cell treatments available today, however, utilise fat or bone marrow injections, which are not the ideal kind of stem cells in this situation since stem cells make up a tiny proportion of the overall number of cells infused.