The use of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) for COVID-19 has become an attractive avenue down which almost 70 different clinical trial teams have ventured. Successfully trialed for the treatment of other conditions such as multiple sclerosis, osteoarthritis and graft versus host disease, MSCs possess both regenerative and immunomodulatory properties, the latter of which can be harnessed to reduce the severity and longevity of Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) in patients under intensive care due to SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Why SMS Cells Are Superior To Mesenchymal Stem Cells
∙ In contrast to embryonic and genetically engineered cells, Small Mobile Stem (SMS) cells are adult stem cells from adult human tissues and because of that they are considered largely safe.
∙ Adult stem cells, mainly Mesenchymal stem cells, have been gaining a lot of momentum in cell therapy. SMS cells however post significant and crucial advantages over Mesenchymal stem cells.
∙ Unlike adult Mesenchymal Stem Cells, SMS cells are isolated from regular blood and when injected into the bloodstream they are in their “natural habitat” unlike the Mesenchymal cells. SMS cells have very few to no histocompatibility proteins, meaning they are unlikely to induce a significant immune-reaction.
∙ Unlike Mesenchymal stem cells that target mainly the immune cells, SMS cells target several different cells that are significant to tissue regeneration.
∙ SMS cells activate mesenchymal stem cell proliferation and may induce the beneficial regenerative effects of endogenous MSC.
∙ SMS cells are sturdier, more robust, and easier to handle. SMS cells are much smaller and, unlike the Mesenchymal cells, will unlikely clog capillaries and get stuck in the lungs.
∙ SMS cells have the ability to proliferate extensively without the loss of functional potency, such as differentiation into other cells or production of regenerative factors, unlike Mesenchymal stem cells.