Cell-Based Regenerative Therapy as an Alternative to Liver Transplantation for End-Stage Liver Disease: Experience from Iran

R Malekzadeh, M Mohamadnejad, K Alimoghaddam, M Bagheri, H Baharvand, A Ghavamzadeh


Several types of cells including mature hepatocytes, adult liver progenitor cells and human embryonic stem cells, fetal liver progenitor cells, bone marrow derived hematopoietic or mesenchymal stem cells, and umbilical cord blood cells—both in rodents and humans—have been reported to be capable of self-replication, giving rise to daughter hepatocytes, both in vivo and in vitro. They have been shown to be able to repopulate liver in both animal models of liver injury and in patients with liver disease and to improve liver function. Human embryonic stem cell therapy seems to be a great promise for the treatment of liver cirrhosis, but there is no human clinical application due to ethical concerns or difficulties in harvesting or safely and efficiently expanding sufficient quantities. In contrast, adult bone marrow-derived hematopoietic or mesenchymal stem cells, which can be easily and safely harvested, have been used in clinical trials to treat several chronic diseases including chronic liver disease. Cell therapy offers exciting promise for future treatment of cirrhosis and metabolic liver diseases, but significant technical hurdles remain that will only be overcome through years of intensive research. There is also serious concern about the long-term safety of stem cell therapy and the possibility of tumor development. Herein, we present our experience with cell therapy in treatment of chronic liver disease in Iran.


Stem cell; liver transplant; cirrhosis; cell therapy; bone marrow

Full Text:


Copyright (c)

 pISSN: 2008-6482
 eISSN: 2008-6490


Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License