Differentiation potential of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells into retina in normal and laser-injured rat eye

Jie Zhang, Qing Shan, Ping Ma, Yanming Jiang, Peng Chen, Jingxia Wen, You Zhou, Huanwen Qian, Xuetao Pei*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can develop into hematopoietic and mesenchymal lineages but have not been known to participate in the production of retina. Here we report that bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells, after being subretinally transplanted into normal or Nd: YAG laser-injured rat eye, can integrate into RPE layer, photoreceptor layer, bipolar cell layer and ganglion layer. DAPI-labeling detection was used to trace the origin of the repopulating cells. DAPI fluorescence was used to identify retina cells of bone marrow origin 10, 20, 35 and 50 days after transplantation. No formation of rosettes was found but some random cells were found at the end of the observation. MSCs-originated cells spread more widely in the injured retinas than in the normal ones. Immunohistochemical detection showed that though the cells could express neuronal nuclei (NeuN), neuron specific enolase (NSE), glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and cytokeratin (CK), the proteins expression in the injured transplantation group was abnormal in some region compared with that in the normal transplantation group. Electroretinogram (ERG) showed that ERG-b wave of the injured transplantation group is significantly higher than that of the two laser-injured control groups. These results suggest that a proportion of MSCs can differentiate into retina-like structure in vivo and the differentiation differs in normal and laser-injured retinas. Copyright by Science in China Press 2004.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-250
Number of pages10
JournalScience in China, Series C: Life Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Differentiation
  • Laser
  • MSCs
  • Retina

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