Published online Aug 26, 2020. doi: 10.4252/wjsc.v12.i8.721
Peer-review started: May 6, 2020
First decision: May 15, 2020
Revised: May 21, 2020
Accepted: August 1, 2020
Article in press: August 1, 2020
Published online: August 26, 2020
Core tip: Based on the biological characteristics of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), especially umbilical cord (UC)-derived MSCs, and the first clinical trial using MSCs for coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) treatment, we discuss the use of UC-MSCs to improve COVID-19 symptoms. UC-MSCs are suitable therapeutic candidates for COVID-19. Indeed, they are the strongest immunomodulatory MSCs and exhibit low immunogenicity compared with bone marrow-derived MSCs, adipose tissue-derived MSCs, and other MSCs. UC-MSCs are easily collected and expanded in vitro with minimal ethical concerns. In summary, UC-MSCs can be used to improve symptoms in patients with severe COVID-19 by suppressing inflammation and stimulating wound healing.