6 Suppl 3:320-7
Potential of adipose-derived stem cells for treatment of erectile dysfunction.
Lin G, Banie L, Ning H, Bella AJ, Lin CS, Lue TF.

Abstract
Adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) are a somatic stem cell population contained in fat tissue that possess the ability for self-renewal, differentiation into one or more phenotypes, and functional regeneration of damaged tissue, which may benefit the recovery of erectile function by using a stem cell-based therapy. AIM: To review available evidence concerning ADSCs availability, differentiation into functional cells, and the potential of these cells for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED).

METHODS: We examined the current data (from 1964 to 2008) associated with the definition, characterization, differentiation, and application of ADSCs, as well as other kinds of stem cells for the cell-based therapies of ED.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: There is strong evidence supporting the concept that ADSCs may be a potential stem cell therapy source in treating ED.

RESULTS: The ADSCs are paravascularly localized in the adipose tissue. Under specific induction medium conditions, these cells differentiated into neuron-like cells, smooth muscle cells, and endothelium in vitro. The insulin-like growth factor/insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF/IGFR) pathway participates in neuronal differentiation while the fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2) pathway is involved in endothelium differentiation. In a preliminary in vivo experiment, the ADSCs functionally recovered the damaged erectile function. However, the underlying mechanism needs to be further examined.

CONCLUSION: The ADSCs are a potential source for stem cell-based therapies, which imply the possibility of an effective clinical therapy for ED in the near future.

PMID: 19267855 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]