The therapeutic potential of the mesenchymal stem cell secretome in ischaemic stroke

Catriona J Cunningham, Elena Redondo-Castro, Stuart M Allan* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

141 Citations (Scopus)
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Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) hold great potential as a regenerative therapy for stroke, leading to increased repair and functional recovery in animal models of cerebral ischaemia. While it was initially hypothesised that cell replacement was an important mechanism of action of MSCs, focus has shifted to their paracrine actions or the so called “bystander” effect. MSCs secrete a wide array of growth factors, chemokines, cytokines and extracellular vesicles, commonly referred to as the MSC secretome. There is evidence suggesting the MSC secretome can promote repair through a number of mechanisms including preventing cell apoptosis, modulating the inflammatory response and promoting endogenous repair mechanisms such as angiogenesis and neurogenesis. In this review, we will discuss the in vitro approaches currently being employed to drive the MSC secretome towards a more anti-inflammatory and regenerative phenotype. We will then examine the role of the secretome in promoting repair and improving recovery in preclinical models of cerebral ischaemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1276-1292
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Issue number8
Early online date18 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2018


  • cell therapy
  • mesenchymal stem cell
  • repair
  • stroke
  • secretome


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