Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers devise way to mass-produce embryonic stem cells

16.03.2005


Ohio – Researchers at Ohio State University have developed a method for mass-producing embryonic stem cells.



That’s important because traditional laboratory methods used to grow these cells are costly and don’t produce cells fast enough to respond to increasing demands for human embryonic stem cells, said Shang-Tian Yang, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Ohio State University.

Federal rules forbid the federal funding of research on human embryonic stem cell lines that aren’t listed on the National Institutes of Health’s Human Embryonic Stem Cell Registry. There are currently 22 embryonic stem cell lines on the registry, and the demand for these cells is steadily growing. "We have to find a way to mass-produce them because traditional cell culturing methods can’t meet the projected high market demand for stem cells," Yang said.


He and Anli Ouyang, a doctoral student in chemical engineering, grew mouse embryonic stem cells in a bioreactor. Cell growth increased 193-fold in 15 days. At the end of that period, cell density – the number of cells that had grown in the bioreactor – was anywhere from 10- to 100-fold higher than the number of stem cells produced by conventional laboratory methods. That’s several hundreds of millions more stem cells.

Mass-producing cells like this could reduce stem cell production costs by at least 80 percent, Yang said, as it requires less equipment and monitoring. Embryonic stem cells are unspecialized, or undifferentiated, cells that can grow into any of the body’s 200 different types of cells. Yang and Ouyang presented their findings in San Diego on March 15 at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society.

They grew some mouse embryonic stem cells in a flask – a conventional way to grow stem cells – while other stem cells grew upon strands of polymer threads inside a bioreactor. The bioreactor used in this study is a tissue-growing device developed by Ohio State scientists. While this bioreactor could be used to produce adult stem cells, the researchers chose to look solely at embryonic stem cells for this experiment.

"There’s more of a demand for an unlimited supply of embryonic stem cells," Yang said. Also, embryonic stem cells are pluripotent – they can become any kind of cell in the body, while adult stem cells usually develop into a type of cell based on the kind of tissue that they originated from.

The bioreactor has a chamber that holds the polymer threads on which the stem cells grow and another chamber that holds fluid, or medium. This medium delivers chemical messengers, called cytokines, to the stem cells. The cytokines essentially tell the stem cells to stay in their undifferentiated state.

The difference between growing stem cells in a flask vs. the bioreactor is that the cells grown in the bioreactor could grow in three dimensions, while cells growing on a flat surface – the bottom of the flask – could not. “Cells grown on a flat surface don’t act like they would in the body," Yang said. "The growing surface affects how a cell forms, what it looks like and even how it expresses genes."

Cells grown in the bioreactor could grow for a much longer period of time than they could in the flask, as cells had more room to grow in the bioreactor. "In the same amount of time we could grow up to a billion stem cells per milliliter in the bioreactor, compared to tens of millions of cells per milliliter with conventional systems," Yang said.

Also, it seems that embryonic stem cells grown by conventional methods are more likely to spontaneously differentiate, or change. Researchers aren’t sure why or how some stem cells differentiate without prompting.

Yang and Ouyang tested both sets of cells – the ones grown in a flask and those grown in the bioreactor – for two key proteins. The presence of these proteins indicates that a stem cell has not differentiated. In the bioreactor experiment, 94 percent of the stem cells tested positive for these proteins, compared to about 85 percent of the cells grown in the flask.

The researchers are now working on ways to program embryonic stem cells so that they differentiate into specific types of cells. In preliminary work, Ouyang has created a network of neurons from undifferentiated embryonic stem cells.

The next step is to use human embryonic stem cells, and the researchers have yet to decide which line of stem cells to use.

The mouse embryonic stem cells used in this study were provided by ATCC, an organization that supplies lines of embryonic stem cell lines.

Shang-Tian Yang | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osu.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute

nachricht Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>