Research Papers:

Potential therapeutic effect of the secretome from human uterine cervical stem cells against both cancer and stromal cells compared with adipose tissue stem cells

Noemí Eiró, Juan Sendon-Lago, Samuel Seoane, María A. Bermúdez, Maria Luz Lamelas, Tomás Garcia-Caballero, José Schneider, Roman Perez-Fernandez and Francisco J. Vizoso _

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Oncotarget. 2014; 5:10692-10708. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.2530

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Noemí Eiró1,5,*, Juan Sendon-Lago2,*, Samuel Seoane2, María A. Bermúdez2, Maria Luz Lamelas1, Tomás Garcia-Caballero3, José Schneider4,5, Roman Perez-Fernandez2,5 and Francisco J. Vizoso1,5

1 Unidad de Investigación, Fundación Hospital de Jove, Gijón, Spain

2 Departamento de Fisiología-CIMUS, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Spain

3 Departamento de Ciencias Morfológicas, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Spain

4 Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Spain

5 Fundación para la Investigación con Células Madre Uterinas (FICEMU), Gijón, Spain

* These authors contributed equally to this work


Francisco J. Vizoso, email:

Keywords: Mesenchymal stem cell; uterine cervix; breast cancer; tumor stroma; cancer-associated fibroblasts; macrophages

Received: July 16, 2014 Accepted: September 25, 2014 Published: September 26, 2014


Evidences indicate that tumor development and progression towards a malignant phenotype depend not only on cancer cells themselves, but are also deeply influenced by tumor stroma reactivity. The present study uses mesenchymal stem cells from normal human uterine cervix (hUCESCs), isolated by the minimally invasive method of routine Pap cervical smear, to study their effect on the three main cell types in a tumor: cancer cells, fibroblasts and macrophages. Administration of hUCESCs-conditioned medium (CM) to a highly invasive breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cell line and to human breast tumors with high cell proliferation rates had the effect of reducing cell proliferation, modifying the cell cycle, inducing apoptosis, and decreasing invasion. In a xenograft mouse tumor model, hUCESCs-CM reduced tumor growth and increased overall survival. In cancer-associated fibroblasts, administration of hUCESCs-CM resulted in reduced cell proliferation, greater apoptosis and decreased invasion. In addition, hUCESCs-CM inhibited and reverted macrophage differentiation. The analysis of hUCESCs-CM (fresh and lyophilized) suggests that a complex paracrine signaling network could be implicated in the anti-tumor potential of hUCESCs.

In light of their anti-tumor potential, the easy cell isolation method, and the fact that lyophilization of their CM conserves original properties make hUCESCs good candidates for experimental or clinical applications in anticancer therapy.

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