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Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are mesoderm-derived adult stem cells that can self-renew and differentiate into various cell lineages. In 1867, they were first reported by the German pathologist Julius Friedrich Cohnheim as “mesenchymal precursor cells” at the sites of tissue injury. The cells were described as fibroblastoid, adherent, and extravasated. MSCs were studied in cell culture experiments about one century later. In the 1970s, Friedenstein and colleagues isolated cells from bone marrow compartments that were adherent to plastic and had the ability to form colonies in vitro. In the early 1990s, these cells were named MSCs by Caplan and others.

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MSCs were originally identified in bone marrow, but later they were found in almost all the tissues of the body, including menstrual blood, umbilical cord blood, ...

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