The future of stem cell therapy in dogs: painless and non-invasive

Scientist of the Osaka Metropolitan University (Japan) have developed an effective, non-invasive and painless method for reprogramming dog stem cells from urine samples.

Are induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) bring the possibility of veterinary regenerative treatment of various diseases in dogs a step closer. This technique has already been used extensively in generative human medicine studies.

iPSCs are cells that arise from the reprogramming of somatic cells such as fibroblasts and blood cells. They can self-renew indefinitely and differentiate into any type of cell in the body similar to embryonic stem cells.

In this study, the research team identified six reprogramming genes that can increase the formation of iPSCs in dogs by 120-fold compared to traditional fibroblast methods.

“iPSCs have the potential to treat a variety of diseases in dogs. However, it is important to note that many more steps may be required to bring them into practical therapeutic use,” he told SINC. Shingo HatoyaCo-director of this work and researcher at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Osaka University.

iPSC cells have the potential to treat a variety of diseases in dogs. However, it is important to note that many more steps may be required to bring them into practical therapeutic use.

Shingo Hatoya (Osaka University)

With the increasing importance of Advanced medical care for dogs and catsThere is an expectation that new iPSC therapies will be developed for these pets, as has been done for humans.

Unfortunately, dog cells have lower reprogramming efficiency than human cells, limiting the types available to generate iPSCs.

“We cannot say definitively which specific diseases will be treated with these technologies. However, we do know that dog iPSCs can produce red blood cells that could be used for treatment anemia. There is also the possibility of creating pancreatic cells for treatment diabetic dogs“ argues Hatoya.

Safer treatments

Induction of IPSCs often involves the use of cells of other species. However, taking into account the risks involved, it is often advisable to minimize them, which brings with it the need to improve the efficiency of reprogramming different types of canine cells in dogs.

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“Previous studies have used mouse fetal fibroblasts as feeder cells for the culture of canine iPSC cells. However, the phagocytes are foreign to the dog and there is a risk of immunological rejection and infection. Therefore, it is necessary to generate and maintain them under conditions that reduce these components, so that the procedure is safer and more suitable for therapeutic applications,” explains the expert.

In the future, I will continue my research on the differentiation of canine iPSCs into different cell types and their application to treat sick dogs.

Shingo Hatoya

The next step in application will involve developing robust methods to differentiate these canine iPSCs into specific cell types, such as red blood cells or cardiomyocytes. These stem cells are also generated and cultivated Really expensive and it is probably also important to distinguish certain cells from iPS cells and use them in therapy. “We need to think about strategies to reduce costs in the future,” says the scientist.

“As a veterinarian, I have examined and treated many animals,” explains Hatoya. “However, there are still many diseases that cannot be cured or are not yet fully understood. In the future, I will continue my research on differentiating canine iPSCs into different cell types and using them to treat sick dogs with the hope of bringing joy to many animals and their owners,” he emphasizes.

On the therapeutic applicationsthese techniques can be applied Drug discoveryas they can be produced by dogs with genetic diseases.

In this way, they could be differentiated into specific cell types associated with a disease, replicating the conditions in a dish. “This disease in a plate model can help understand the pathophysiology of diseases and be used for drug development. However, further research is needed to fully realize this potential,” concludes Hatoya.


Shingo HATOYA et al. “Generation of induced canine pluripotent stem cells under feeder-free conditions using the Sendai virus vector encoding six canine reprogramming factors,” Stem Cell Reports

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