Mesenchymal stromal cells for corneal transplantation: Literature review and suggestions for successful clinical trials

Joo Youn Oh, Eunjae Kim, Young In Yun, Ryang Hwa Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Corneal transplantation is a routine procedure for patients with corneal blindness. Despite the streamlining of surgical techniques and deeper understanding of the cellular and molecular pathways mediating rejection, corticosteroids are still the main immunosuppressive regimen in corneal transplantation, and the 15-year survival of corneal transplants remains as low as 50%, which is poorer than that for most solid organ transplants. Recently, mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) with unique regenerative and immune-modulating properties have emerged as a promising cell therapy to promote transplant tolerance, minimize the use of immunosuppressants, and prevent chronic rejection. Here, we review the literature on preclinical studies of MSCs for corneal transplantation and summarize the key findings from clinical trials with MSCs in solid organ transplantation. Finally, we highlight current issues and challenges regarding MSC therapies and suggest strategies for safe and effective MSC-based therapies in clinical transplantation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-194
Number of pages10
JournalOcular Surface
Volume20
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Keywords

  • Cell therapy
  • Corneal transplantation
  • Immune suppression
  • Immune tolerance
  • Mesenchymal stromal cell
  • Solid organ transplantation

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