Primary myogenic cells see the light: Improved survival of transplanted myogenic cells following low energy laser irradiation

Gabi Shefer*, Nadav Ben-Dov, Orna Halevy, Uri Oron

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Objectives: There is a substantial need for finding new avenues to promote muscle recovery when acute skeletal muscle loss extends beyond the natural capacity of the muscle to recover. Maintenance and regeneration of skeletal muscles depend mainly on resident stem cells known as satellite cells. Nevertheless, there are situations in which a significant loss of muscle tissue exhausts the satellite cell pool. For such cases, cell therapy and tissue engineering are becoming promising alternatives. Thus far, attempts to supplement damaged host muscles with donor satellite cells by means of myoblast transplantation therapy were mostly unsuccessful due to massive and rapid loss of donor cells within few hours after transplantation. This study aims at following the effects of low-energy-laser irradiation on the fate of implanted myoblasts. Study Design: Primary myogenic cells, harvested from male rat skeletal muscles, were irradiated with low energy laser, seeded on a biodegradable scaffold and expanded in vitro. The scaffold containing cells was transplanted into partially excised muscles of host female rats. Donor cells were identified in the host muscle tissue, using Y-chromosome in situ hybridization. Results: In this study, we show that laser irradiated donor primary myogenic cells not only survive, but also fuse with host myoblasts to form a host-donor syncytium. Conclusions: Our data show that the use of low energy laser irradiation (LELI), a non-surgical tool, is a promising means to enhance both the survival and functionality of transplanted primary myogenic cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-45
Number of pages8
JournalLasers in Surgery and Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008


  • Myoblast
  • Scaffolds
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Stem cell
  • Survival


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