Pulsed magnetic therapy increases osteogenic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells only if they are pre-committed

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Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy has been documented to be an effective, non-invasive, safe treatment method for a variety of clinical conditions, especially in settings of recalcitrant healing. The underlying mechanisms on the different biological components of tissue regeneration are still to be elucidated. The aim of the present study was to characterize the effects of extremely low frequency (ELF)-PEMFs on commitment of mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs) culture system, through the determination of gene expression pattern and cellular morphology.

Main methods:

Human MSCs derived from adipose tissue (ADSCs) were cultured in presence of adipogenic, osteogenic, neural, or glial differentiative medium and basal medium, then exposed to ELF-PEMFs daily stimulation for 21 days. Control cultures were performed without ELF-PEMFs stimulation for all cell populations. Effects on commitment were evaluated after 21 days of cultures.

Key findings:

The results suggested ELF-PEMFs does not influence ADSCs commitment and does not promote adipogenic, osteogenic, neural or glial differentiation. However, ELF-PEMFs treatment on ADSCs cultured in osteogenic differentiative medium markedly increased osteogenesis.


We concluded that PEMFs affect the osteogenic differentiation of ADSCs only if they are pre-commitment and that this therapy can be an appropriate candidate for treatment of conditions requiring an acceleration of repairing process.

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