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Clonal USSC - DLK1-positive Human Cord Blood Derived Unrestricted Somatic Stem Cells

Over the last years, there was a tremendous increase in the clinical use of allogenic cord blood (CB) for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Amongst others CB consists of hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic stem cells like mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) and unrestricted somatic stem cells (USSC).

Even though the adherent USSC described in the invention share many overlapping features with MSC from fetal tissue and bone marrow such as the immunophenotype, osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation potential, these USSC are a more immature precursor cell population. Not being so far committed and specialized, they represent a promising source for regenerative medicine.

The invention discloses a multipotent, stable cell line that could be isolated from cord blood. The somatic stem cells are CD34-, Oct4-, Nanog-, Sox2- and telomerase negative and neither differentiate into hematopoietic lineage cells and endothelial stem or progenitor cells nor into adipocytes. They are distinct from but capable to differentiate into mesenchymal cells (bone cells or chondrocytes), neural cells and endoderm cells.

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