Background: Multipotent stromal cells are present in the Wharton's jelly matrix (WJSC) of the umbilical cord and can be used as an allogeneic source of cells to treat immunological disorders. Recently it was demonstrated that adult bone marrow (BM)-derived mesenchimal stromal cells (MSC) are susceptible to infection with viruses showing potential oncogenic properties, such as the polyomavirus JC (JCV). The aim of this study was to investigate the presence of human polyomaviruses (JCV, BK Virus-BKV, SV40, and Merkel cell polyomavirus-MCPyV) in WJSC, and explore the risk of infection. Procedure: MSC samples from 35 umbilical cords were investigated by quantitative Real Time PCRs for the presence of DNA sequences of JCV, BKV, SV40, and MCPyV. Results: JCV DNA was detected in 1/35 (2.8%) of MSC samples, while SV40 DNA was found in 3/35 (8.6%) of the examined samples. None of the samples showed sequences of BKV and MCPyV. Conclusions: The present study demonstrates the in vivo ability of polyomaviruses to infect WJSC. Since the therapeutic approach with the WJSC has high potentiality and a more intensive use can be easily hypothesized, the need to develop consensus guidelines to detect rare viral infections in MSC is pressing.
- Umbilical cords
- Wharton's jelly stromal cells
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health