As Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) have important immunomodulating properties, it is essential to follow their impact on immune cells after treatment of patients as required by the regulatory authorities. For this purpose, ECellFrance has set up 2 state-of-the-art immunomonitoring platforms, in Rennes and Montpellier, which characterize and monitor the effect of MSC on immune cells phenotype and function.

ECellFrance’s immunomonitoring platforms provide clinical investigators with a completely standardized process, including the logistics from the sample collection and transport to the flow cytometry experiments, analysis, reporting, and the freezing of plasma and mononuclear cells for further functional characterization. The capacity and organization of the platforms enables to monitor large cohorts of patients treated by MSC in France and in Europe (see ECF-clinical trials).

ECellFrance offers two levels of immunomonitoring (level 1 or 2) based on the therapeutic applications and the aims of the project. Level 1 and 2 key features are summarized below. Customized assays may also be implemented when appropriate. The levels and options are discussed with the project carrier(s) (academics or industrials) following their application to access ECellFrance’s services.

immunomonitoring offering:

  • choice between two immunomonitoring packs (level 1 or 2)
  • pack 1 (level 1  “standard” analyses associated with the production of GMP-MSC). Goal : determine the frequencies and absolute numbers of the main immune cell subsets before (D0) and after MSC-injection (M1 and M3)

o    cell count (T cells, B cells, NK cells, monocytes, DCs)
o    monocytes subsets (classic, intermediate, and patrolling monocytes)
o    Dendritic Cell subsets (CD141+ myeloid, CD1c myeloid, and plasmacytoid subsets)
o    CD4 and CD8 T lymphocytes (naïve, central memory, and effector memory)
o    T helper cells subsets (Th1, Th2, TH17)
o    Treg cell subsets (naïve, effector, and activated Treg subsets)
o    B cell subsets (naïve, switched and unswitched memory subsets, plasmablast, and plasma cells)
o    NK cell subsets (CD56 bright and CD56 dim)

  • pack 2 (level 2 “advanced analyses”). Goal: to set up experiments to define in vitro functional impact of MSC on immune functions.

o    impact of MSC on macrophage polarization, on T helper cell differentiation…

  • standardized, validated assays available for large series of patients receiving MSC
  • cross-validation of the phenotypic characterization of circulating immune cells