Introduction: The enhancement of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) therapeutic potential is considered an important scientific task. Though it was demonstrated, that pre-conditioning with interferon-γ (IFNγ) is able to enhance the MSC immunomodulatory properties, no current data is known from literature about the effects of interferon-α (IFNα) on MSC. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of interferon-γ (IFNγ) and interferon-α (IFNα) primed Wharton jelly MSC.
Methodology: The experimental model of influenza pneumonia was obtained by intranasal infection of white non-inbred mice, with the influenza virus A/FM/1/47/H1N1/, adapted for mouse lung tissue, with the infection titer 4,0 lg ID50, and hemagglutinin titer 1:256 HA units/0,2 ml. Human Wharton jelly MSC at passage 2 were fed with fresh culture media containing recombinant human IFNγ (20 and 500 U) and recombinant human IFNα (2000 U and 10000 U), overnight. After that, MSC were collected, and transplanted to model mice intravenously, at 2x105 per mouse.
Results: MSC transplantation enhanced the survival comparing to non-treated control. The increase of survival rate in groups, treated with IFNγ-primed MSC reached 80% (both 20 and 500 U), while mice, treated with the IFNα-pre-conditioned MSC (both 2000 and 10000 U), showed 20% increase in survival level. Histological analysis demonstrated an early formation of dence peribronchial and perivascular lymphoid macrophage infiltrates in lung parenchyma, which are the morphological evidence of easier experimental viral pneumonia progression. These formations have the high level of specialization of local cellular immunity and match all the criteria of the first line of antiviral defense.
Conclusion: The present work showed, that pre-conditioning influences the therapeutic effect of MSC on viral infections. The demonstrated effects need further investigation.