Clinical safety of intratesticular transplantation of allogeneic bone marrow multipotent stromal cells in stallions

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Although stem cell therapy is a promising alternative for treatment of degenerative diseases, there are just few reports on the use of stem cells therapy in horse's reproductive system. This study aims to evaluate the effect of intratesticular injection of bone marrow mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSCs) in healthy stallions, and its outcome on seminal parameters and fertility. In Experiment 1, 24 stallions were divided into treatment group (TG) and control group (CG). In the TG, an intratesticular application of MSC was performed, and in the CG, only PBS was used. Measurements of testicular volume, surface temperature and Doppler ultrasonography were performed 24 and 48 hr after treatments. Fifteen days after application, the testicles were removed and submitted to histological analysis. In Experiment 2, 3 fertile stallions received similarly treatment with MSCs. Physical examination and sperm analysis were performed weekly during 60 days after treatment, and at the end, semen from one of them was used for artificial inseminations of 6 healthy mares. In Experiment 1, clinical examinations showed no signals of acute inflammation on both groups according to the analysed variables (p > .05). Also, no signal of chronic inflammation was observed on histological evaluation. In Experiment 2, stallions presented no physical alterations or changes in sperm parameters, and a satisfactory fertility rate (83%; 5/6) was observed after AI. The results support the hypothesis that intratesticular application of bone marrow MSCs is a safe procedure, and this could be a promising alternative to treat testicular degenerative conditions.




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Reproduction In Domestic Animals. Hoboken: Wiley, v. 55, n. 4, p. 429-437, 2020.

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