Biosynthesis of magnetic nanoparticles by human mesenchymal stem cells following transfection with the magnetotactic bacterial gene mms6

Alistair Elfick, Grigore Rischitor, Rabah Mouras, Asim Azfer, Lisa Lungaro, Marc Uhlarz, Thomas Herrmannsdörfer, John Lucocq, Wesam Gamal, Pierre Bagnaninchi, Scott Semple, Donald M. Salter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The use of stem cells to support tissue repair is facilitated by loading of the therapeutic cells with magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) enabling magnetic tracking and targeting. Current methods for magnetizing cells use artificial MNPs and have disadvantages of variable uptake, cellular cytotoxicity and loss of nanoparticles on cell division. Here we demonstrate a transgenic approach to magnetize human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). MSCs are genetically modified by transfection with the mms6 gene derived from Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1, a magnetotactic bacterium that synthesises single-magnetic domain crystals which are incorporated into magnetosomes. Following transfection of MSCs with the mms6 gene there is bio-assimilated synthesis of intracytoplasmic magnetic nanoparticles which can be imaged by MR and which have no deleterious effects on cell proliferation, migration or differentiation. The assimilation of magnetic nanoparticle synthesis into mammalian cells creates a real and compelling, cytocompatible, alternative to exogenous administration of MNPs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number39755
Number of pages8
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2017

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