Mesenchymal Stem Cells in COVID-19: A Journey from Bench to Bedside

UMMS Affiliation

Division of Hematology and Oncology, Department of Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Hematology | Infectious Disease | Therapeutics | Translational Medical Research | Virus Diseases


The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a major setback in both the health and economic sectors across the globe. The scale of the problem is enormous because we still do not have any specific anti-SARS-CoV-2 antiviral agent or vaccine. The human immune system has never been exposed to this novel virus, so the viral interactions with the human immune system are completely naive. New approaches are being studied at various levels, including animal in vitro models and human-based studies, to contain the COVID-19 pandemic as soon as possible. Many drugs are being tested for repurposing, but so far only remdesivir has shown some positive benefits based on preliminary reports, but these results also need further confirmation via ongoing trials. Otherwise, no other agents have shown an impactful response against COVID-19. Recently, research exploring the therapeutic application of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in critically ill patients suffering from COVID-19 has gained momentum. The patients belonging to this subset are most likely beyond the point where they could benefit from an antiviral therapy because most of their illness at this stage of disease is driven by inflammatory (over)response of the immune system. In this review, we discuss the potential of MSCs as a therapeutic option for patients with COVID-19, based on the encouraging results from the preliminary data showing improved outcomes in the progression of COVID-19 disease.


COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 Virus, Stem cells, clinical trials, pandemic, vaccine

DOI of Published Version



Sahu KK, Siddiqui AD, Cerny J. Mesenchymal Stem Cells in COVID-19: A Journey from Bench to Bedside. Lab Med. 2020 Jul 30:lmaa049. doi: 10.1093/labmed/lmaa049. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32729620. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Laboratory medicine

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID