2014 NAMS/Pfizer—Wulf H. Utian Endowed LectureAdult mesenchymal stem cells and women’s healthCaplan, Arnold I. PhD Author Information From the Skeletal Research Center, Department of Biology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH. Received October 10, 2014; revised and accepted October 30, 2014. The content of this article was presented by Dr. Arnold I. Caplan as the NAMS/Pfizer—Wulf H. Utian Endowed Lecture in Washington, DC, at the Annual Meeting of The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) on October 17, 2014. An endowment from Pfizer to NAMS established this annual lectureship, with faculty selected by the NAMS Scientific Program Committee. Funding/support: The work reported here was supported by the National Institutes of Health (National Cancer Institute; R01-CA163562) and the L. David and E. Virginia Baldwin Fund. Financial disclosure/conflicts of interest: Case Western Reserve University has received royalties from Osiris Therapeutics Inc, which it shares with A.I.C. Address correspondence to: Arnold I. Caplan, PhD, Skeletal Research Center, Department of Biology, Case Western Reserve University, 10900 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44106. E-mail: [email protected] Menopause: February 2015 - Volume 22 - Issue 2 - p 131-135 doi: 10.1097/GME.0000000000000408 Buy Metrics Abstract Adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were previously described as multipotent cells that could differentiate into bone, cartilage, muscle, and other mesenchymal tissues. New information suggests that MSCs can be found in every tissue of the body because they function as perivascular cells—pericytes—found outside all blood vessels. When these vessels break or are inflamed, pericytes are detached and form MSCs, which are activated by their local microenvironment of injury. Such MSCs function to secrete powerful immune-modulatory and regenerative agents; more than 450 clinical trials are now ongoing, covering a huge spectrum of clinical conditions. How such activated MSCs affect menstrual cycle, menopause, or osteotrophic cancers has only recently been studied. This article outlines these issues and challenges the scientific and medical community to use this newfound knowledge to uncover new clinical logics and medial solutions for women. © 2015 by The North American Menopause Society.