Mesenchymal Lineage Cells

Mesoblast’s proprietary mesenchymal lineage adult stem cells (MLCs) are found in multiple tissues where they play vital roles in maintaining tissue health.

They are rare cells found around blood vessels that respond to signals associated with tissue damage; secreting mediators and growth factors which promote tissue repair and modulate immune responses. 

The therapeutic and commercial properties offered by the MLC platform technology have attributed significantly to Mesoblast’s position as a global leader in cellular medicines.

Our MLC technology platform enables development of a broad product range based on distinct cell types derived from, or that are the progeny of, the earliest precursors of the mesenchymal cell lineage in adult tissues; these cells are known as mesenchymal precursor cells (MPCs). MPCs can be isolated using monoclonal antibodies and are then expanded in culture without differentiation.

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are defined biologically in culture following density gradient separation from other tissue cell types and following culture by plastic adherence. MSCs presumably represent culture-expanded in vitro progeny of the undifferentiated MPCs present in vivo. The different functional characteristics of each cell type enable distinct product development for different targeted diseases.

Preclinical studies have demonstrated that the biological activites of the biomolecules secreted by MLCs on damaged tissues include:

    • Blood vessel function and regeneration - MLCs play a central role in the maintenance, repair and regeneration of blood vessels through the secretion of growth factors which act on endothelial cells to promote blood vessel regeneration and function.
    • Tissue repair – MLCs represent a key cellular constituent of stem cell niches in multiple adult tissues such as the bone marrow, heart and brain where they facilitate endogenous tissue repair by mechanisms including promotion of survival and function of mature cells within a given tissue or of the endogenous stem cells with which they are associated in niches within these tissues.
    • Immunomodulation - MLCs play a physiological role in modulating immune responses via their ability to secrete immunomodulatory proteins in response to inflammatory stimuli.

Allogeneic Properties

Our proprietary MLC-based products have two distinct technical properties that enable their use for “off-the-shelf” or allogeneic purposes, meaning cells from one donor can be expanded to treat many unrelated recipients.

        1. Expansion

          We have developed proprietary methods that enable the large scale expansion of our MLCs while maintaining their ability to produce key biomolecules associated with tissue health and repair. This allows us to produce a cellular product with consistent, well-defined therapeutic properties, batch release criteria and established potency assays, all with accompanying manufacturing economies of scale.

        2. Immune Privilege

          Unlike other categories of stem cells or mature cell lineages, MLCs are immune privileged, in that they do not express specific cell surface co-stimulatory molecules that would otherwise initiate an immune response when administered to unrelated patients.