Mesenchymal stem cells

Cell therapy


Cell therapy represents an innovative field of human and veterinary medicine which allows to treat a series of pathological pictures and which, due to its high potential, arouses much interest in scientific research. The cells mainly involved are adult stem cells.


The applications of cell therapy are many and specific. Each patient needs a thorough preliminary assessment that will help the veterinarian understand the best strategy to use.

Stem cells

Stem cells can be classified both on the basis of their differentiation capacity and on their origin. Based on their origin, the following are recognized.

Embryonic stem cells

Adult stem cells

Induced pluripotent stem cells

Embryonic stem cells

What are they?

Embryonic stem cells are cells present in the early stages of both human and animal embryos. These cells are TOTIPOTENT this means that they are able of differentiating into all cells of the body. These cells, growing up, lose their differentiation capacity and are transformed into MULTIPOTENT cells, that are capable of differentiating only into the cell types from which they originate.

Why don't we use them?

Research in recent years has mainly focused on the use of adult stem cells. Unlike embryonic stem cells, they can be taken from different tissues of the human and animal body, such as bone marrow or adipose tissue; embryonic cells, on the other hand, can only be taken from embryos (with consequent ethical problems).

Adult stem cells

Hematopoietic stem cells

from which the cellular components of the blood (red blood cells, platelets, etc.) derive.

Stromal or mesenchymal stem cells (MSC)

From which the precursors of bone, cartilage, muscle, adipose tissue, but also nervous tissue, etc. derive.

MSCs are currently widely used both for their regenerative and immunomodulatory capabilities. In fact, they are able to migrate to affected areas by attracting other cells and supporting their differentiation.


The Italian legislation in this regard (agreement 17 October 2013), requires that the products of cell therapy are exclusively autologous (the initial sample and the finished product must derive and be administered to the same animal), and that they are prepared by qualified personnel with proven experience about.


These are just some of the possible applications for cell therapy, but the potential represented by this product of regenerative medicine opens the door to other lines of research as evidenced by the scientific literature.

Voga M, Adamic N, Vengust M and Majdic G (2020) Stem Cells in Veterinary Medicine—Current State and Treatment Options. Front. Vet. Sci. 7:278. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2020.00278

 Jessica M. Quimby, Stem Cell Therapy, Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice, Volume 49, Issue 2, 2019, Pages 223-231, ISSN 0195-5616, ISBN 9780323678483,

Voga M, Adamic N, Vengust M, Majdic G. Stem Cells in Veterinary Medicine-Current State and Treatment Options. Front Vet Sci. 2020 May 29;7:278. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2020.00278. PMID: 32656249; PMCID: PMC7326035

Musculoskeletal disorders

traumatic or degenerative injuries of the tendons and ligaments, muscle injuries;

Joint disease

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Oral and dental diseases

like feline gingivitis- stomatitis.

Diseases of the digestive system

like IBD and other chronic inflammatory diseases.

Neuromuscular disorders

acute and chronic spinal cord injuries

Skin disorders

and wound healing

Ocular pathologies

Corneal ulcers and kerato-conjunctivitis

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