Variations in humanized and defined culture conditions supporting derivation of new human embryonic stem cell lines


The evolution of "humanized" (i.e., free of animal sourced reagents) and ultimately chemically defined culture systems for human embryo stem cell (hESC) isolation and culture is of importance to improving their efficacy and safety in research and therapeutic applications. This can be achieved by integration of a multitude of individual approaches to replace or eliminate specific animal sourced reagents into a single comprehensive protocol. In the present study our objective was to integrate strategies obviating reliance on some of the most poorly defined and path-critical factors associated with hESC derivation, namely the use of animal immune compliment to isolate embryo inner cell mass, and animal sourced serum products and feeder cells to sustain hESC growth and attachment. As a result we report the derivation of six new hESC lines isolated by outgrowth from whole blastocysts on an extracellular matrix substrate of purified human laminin (Ln) with transitional reliance on mitotically inactivated human fibroblast (HDF) feeder cells. With this integrated system hESC lines were isolated using either HDF conditioned medium supplemented with a bovine-sourced serum replacement (bSRM), or a defined serum-free medium (SFM) containing only human sourced and recombinant protein. Further, outgrowth of embryonic cells from whole blastocysts in both media could be achieved for up to 1 week without reliance on feeder cells. All variant conditions sustained undifferentiated cell status, a stable karyotype and the potential to form cells representative of all three germinal lineages in vitro and in vivo, when transitioned off of feeders onto Laminin or Matrigel. Our study thus demonstrates the capacity to integrate derivation strategies eliminating a requirement for animal immune compliment and serum products, with a transitional requirement for human feeder cells. This represents another sequential step in the generation of therapeutic grade stem cells with reduced risk of zoonotic pathogen transmission.

Authors Fletcher JM, Ferrier PM, Gardner JO, Harkness L, Dhanjal S, Serhal P, Harper J, Delhanty J, Brownstein DG, Prasad YR, Lebkowski J, Mandalam R, Wilmut I, De Sousa PA
Journal Cloning and stem cells
Publication Date 2006 Winter;8(4):319-34
PubMed 17196096
DOI 10.1089/clo.2006.8.319

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