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Mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles attenuate influenza virus-induced acute lung injury in a pig model



Mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles attenuate influenza virus-induced acute lung injury in a pig model



Stem Cell Research and Therapy 9(1): 17



Mesenchymal stem (stromal) cells (MSCs) mediate their immunoregulatory and tissue repair functions by secreting paracrine factors, including extracellular vesicles (EVs). In several animal models of human diseases, MSC-EVs mimic the beneficial effects of MSCs. Influenza viruses cause annual outbreaks of acute respiratory illness resulting in significant mortality and morbidity. Influenza viruses constantly evolve, thus generating drug-resistant strains and rendering current vaccines less effective against the newly generated strains. Therefore, new therapies that can control virus replication and the inflammatory response of the host are needed. The objective of this study was to examine if MSC-EV treatment can attenuate influenza virus-induced acute lung injury in a preclinical model. We isolated EVs from swine bone marrow-derived MSCs. Morphology of MSC-EVs was determined by electron microscopy and expression of mesenchymal markers was examined by flow cytometry. Next, we examined the anti-influenza activity of MSC-EVs in vitro in lung epithelial cells and anti-viral and immunomodulatory properties in vivo in a pig model of influenza virus. MSC-EVs were isolated from MSC-conditioned medium by ultracentrifugation. MSC-EVs were round-shaped and, similarly to MSCs, expressed mesenchymal markers and lacked the expression of swine leukocyte antigens I and II. Incubation of PKH-26-labeled EVs with lung epithelial cells revealed that MSC-EVs incorporated into the epithelial cells. Next, we examined the anti-influenza and anti-inflammatory properties of MSC-EVs. MSC-EVs inhibited the hemagglutination activity of avian, swine, and human influenza viruses at concentrations of 1.25-5 μg/ml. MSC-EVs inhibited influenza virus replication and virus-induced apoptosis in lung epithelial cells. The anti-influenza activity of MSC-EVs was due to transfer of RNAs from EVs to epithelial cells since pre-incubation of MSC-EVs with RNase enzyme abrogated the anti-influenza activity of MSC-EVs. In a pig model of influenza virus, intratracheal administration of MSC-EVs 12 h after influenza virus infection significantly reduced virus shedding in the nasal swabs, influenza virus replication in the lungs, and virus-induced production of proinflammatory cytokines in the lungs of influenza-infected pigs. The histopathological findings revealed that MSC-EVs alleviated influenza virus-induced lung lesions in pigs. Our data demonstrated in a relevant preclinical large animal model of influenza virus that MSC-EVs possessed anti-influenza and anti-inflammatory properties and that EVs may be used as cell-free therapy for influenza in humans.

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Accession: 065310087

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 29378639

DOI: 10.1186/s13287-018-0774-8


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