The in vitro treatment of mesenchymal stem cells for colorectal cancer cells

Abatay-Sel F., Erol A., Suleymanoglu M., Demirayak G., Kekik-Cinar Ç., Kuruca D. S., ...More

Medical Oncology, vol.40, no.3, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 40 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12032-023-01972-4
  • Journal Name: Medical Oncology
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Keywords: Caspase-3, Colorectal cancer, HTRA2/Omi, Umbilical cord blood mesenchymal stem cell, Wharton’s jelly mesenchymal stem cell
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Colorectal cancer is the most common tumor of the gastrointestinal system. The conventional treatment options for colorectal cancer are troublesome for both patients and clinicians. Recently, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been the novel focus for cell therapy due to their migration to tumor sites. In this study, the apoptotic effect of MSCs on colorectal cancer cell lines has been aimed. HCT-116 and HT-29 were selected as the colorectal cancer cell lines. Human umbilical cord blood and Wharton’s jelly were used as mesenchymal stem cell sources. To discriminate against the apoptotic effect of MSC on cancer, we also used peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) as a healthy control group. Cord blood-MSC and PBMC were obtained by ficoll-paque density gradient, and Wharton’s jelly-MSC by explant method. Transwell co-culture systems were used as cancer cells or PBMC/MSCs at ratios of 1/5 and 1/10, with incubation times of 24 h and 72 h. The Annexin V/PI-FITC-based apoptosis assay was performed by flow cytometry. Caspase-3 and HTRA2/Omi proteins were measured by ELISA. For both ratios in both cancer cells, it was found that the apoptotic effect of Wharton’s jelly-MSC was significantly higher in 72-h incubations (p < 0.006), whereas the effect of cord blood mesenchymal stem cell in 24-h incubations were higher (p < 0.007). In this study, we showed that human cord blood and tissue-derived MSCs treatment led to colorectal cancers to apoptosis. We anticipate that further in vivo studies may shed light on the apoptotic effect of MSC.