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European UrologyVolume 63, issue 3, pages e33-e44, March 2013
Intratunical Injection of Human Adipose Tissue–derived Stem Cells Prevents Fibrosis and Is Associated with Improved Erectile Function in a Rat Model of Peyronie's Disease
Accepted 14 September 2012, Published online 25 September 2012, pages 551 - 560
Peyronie's disease (PD) is a connective tissue disorder of the tunica albuginea (TA). Currently, no gold standard has been developed for the treatment of the disease in its active phase.
To test the effects of a local injection of adipose tissue–derived stem cells (ADSCs) in the active phase of a rat model of PD on the subsequent development of fibrosis and elastosis of the TA and underlying erectile tissue.
Design, setting, and participants
A total of 27 male 12-wk-old Sprague-Dawley rats were divided in three equal groups and underwent injection of vehicle (sham), 50-μg transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 in a 50-μl vehicle in either a PD or a PD plus ADSC group in the dorsal aspect of the TA.
The sham and PD groups were treated 1 d after TGF-β1 injection with intralesional treatment of vehicle, and the PD plus ADSC group received 1 million human-labeled ADSCs in the 50-μl vehicle. Five weeks after treatment, six rats per group underwent erectile function measurement. Following euthanasia, penises were harvested for histology and Western blot.
Outcome measurements and statistical analysis
The ratio of intracavernous pressure to mean arterial pressure (ICP/MAP) upon cavernous nerve stimulation, elastin, and collagen III protein expression and histomorphometric analysis of the penis. Statistical analysis was performed by analysis of variance followed by the Tukey-Kramer test for post hoc comparisons or the Mann-Whitney test when applicable.
Results and limitations
Erectile function significantly improved after ADSC treatment (ICP/MAP 0.37 in PD vs 0.59 in PD plus ADSC at 5-V stimulation; p = 0.03). PD animals developed areas of fibrosis and elastosis with a significant upregulation of collagen III and elastin protein expression. These fibrotic changes were prevented by ADSC treatment.
This study is the first to test stem cell therapy in an animal model of PD. Injection of ADSCs into the TA during the active phase of PD prevents the formation of fibrosis and elastosis in the TA and corpus cavernosum.
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