Acute renal failure (ARF) is a syndrome of abrupt decline in renal function induced by a number
of different insults. In clinic, the common etiology for ARF is ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI). The
pathophysiological process of renal IRI is complex, there is no good treatment. Stem cell therapy is a new
and promising treatment for renal IRI. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have the ability to differentiate
into tissues of mesodermal lineages. MSCs are under intensive study as potential therapeutic strategy for
renal IRI. MSCs have been investigated with immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory and tissue repair
properties which could attenuate ischemic injury and accelerate the regeneration process in the condition
of renal IRI. Moreover, the MSCs have the ability to migrate to the injury sites and to stimulate repair by
paracrine mechanisms rather by differentiating into the injured cells. Here we review the latest information
on MSCs, their biological characteristics, including their therapeutic perspectives, and envisage their
putative role in renal ischaemic conditioning.
Keywords: Differentiation, immunomodulatory, ischemia-reperfusion injury, kidney, mesenchymal stem cells, paracrine.
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