Adipose-derived stem cells are a kind of mesenchymal stem cells which have a higher frequency in the adipose tissue and can be harvested by minimally invasive procedures. These cells are able to differentiate into other cells outside their lineage such as neuron, neurotrophic factor secreting cells and Schwann cells. Many of the identified neurotrophic factors such as brain-derived neurotrophic factor, nerve growth factor, and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor can be produced by adipose-derived stem cells. In addition, these cells when differentiated into neurotrophic factor secreting cells are able to secrete a significantly high level of these factors. Neurotrophic factors have a significant role in cellular processes include cell proliferation, differentiation and maturation. This article reviews the in vitro differentiation of adiposederived stem cells into neural lineage cells and clinical application.
Keywords: Adipose-derived stem cells, neurogenic differentiation, schwann cells, neurotrophic factor secreting cells