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Mesenchymal stem cells: A double-edged sword in radiation-induced lung injury

Mesenchymal stem cells: A double-edged sword in radiation-induced lung injury

Thoracic Cancer 9(2): 208-217

Radiation therapy is an important treatment modality for multiple thoracic malignancies. However, radiation-induced lung injury (RILI), which is the term generally used to describe damage to the lungs caused by exposure to ionizing radiation, remains a critical issue affecting both tumor control and patient quality of life. Despite tremendous effort, there is no current consensus regarding the optimal treatment approach for RILI. Because of a number of functional advantages, including self-proliferation, multi-differentiation, injury foci chemotaxis, anti-inflammation, and immunomodulation, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been a focus of research for many years. Accumulating evidence indicates the therapeutic potential of transplantation of MSCs derived from adipose tissue, umbilical cord blood, and bone marrow for inflammatory diseases, including RILI. However, reports have also shown that MSCs, including fibrocytes, lung hematopoietic progenitor cells, and ABCG2+ MSCs, actually enhance the progression of lung injuries. These contradictory results suggest that MSCs may have dual effects and that caution should be taken when using MSCs to treat RILI. In this review, we present and discuss recent evidence of the double-edged function of MSCs and provide comments on the prospects of these findings.

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Accession: 065310106

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PMID: 29235254

DOI: 10.1111/1759-7714.12573

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