Bringing cardiac stem cell therapy from bench to bedside: lessons from the past and future perspectives

Vol. 57 No. 2 Suppl., 2016
This supplement was not sponsored by Outside Organizations.


Miruna Mihaela Micheu, Alexandru Scafa-Udriste, Maria Dorobantu

Findings in the cardiology field from the last three decades of the 20th century were ruled by the theory that the heart is a post-mitotic organ, incapable to regenerate. Recent studies have brought evidences regarding the existence of some cells residing in the adult heart, having stem properties. These cardiac stem cells (CSCs) govern myocardial homeostasis and repair by differentiating into new cardiomyocytes, smooth muscle cells and vascular endothelial cells and also by releasing proangiogenic and procardiogenic cytokines. Hence, CSC-based therapy seems to be a promising tool for repairing failing hearts. This review presents the current data regarding various subpopulations of CSCs and their regenerative potential revealed by phase I clinical trials; finally, future perspectives for the development of more advanced therapeutic protocols are proposed.

Corresponding author: Miruna Mihaela Micheu, MD; e-mail:

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Isabela Silosi, Cristian Adrian Silosi, Mihail Virgil Boldeanu, Manole Cojocaru, Viorel Biciusca, Carmen Silvia Avramescu, Inimioara Mihaela Cojocaru, Maria Bogdan, Roxana Mihaela Folcuti

Serum of healthy individuals contains antibodies that react with self and non-self antigens, generated in absence of external antigen stimulation. These antibodies, called natural antibodies, are particularly IgM isotype, are considered natural autoantibodies (NAA), displaying a moderate affinity for self-antigens. Although incidence of NAA in healthy individuals is not reported, it is established that autoreactive antibodies and B-cells, as well as autoreactive T-cells, are present in healthy persons. The functional abilities of NAA are not clear but is well accepted that they may participate in a variety of activities, such as maintenance of immune homeostasis, regulation of the immune response, resistance to infections, transport and functional modulation of biologically active molecules. On the other hand, specific adaptive immune responses through high-affinity, class-switched IgG autoantibodies, which bind self-proteins, can cause tissue damage or malfunctions, inducing autoimmune diseases. The new technology that allows for more autoantibody screening may further enhance the clinical utility of autoantibody tests, making it possible to diagnose autoimmune disease in its early stages and to intervene before installing injuries. The aim of this review paper is to succinctly analyze the progress in the physiological role and regulatory significance of natural autoantibodies in health and disease.

Corresponding author: Cristian Adrian Silosi, Lecturer, MD, PhD; e-mail:

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