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In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Anim. 1994 Dec;30A(12):851-8.

Colony isolation and secondary culture of fetal porcine hepatocytes on STO feeder cells.

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  • 1U.S. Department of Agriculture, Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, Maryland 20705.


The secondary culture of non-transformed parenchymal hepatocytes has not been possible. STO feeder cell-dependent secondary cultures of fetal pig hepatocytes were established by colony isolation from primary cultures of 26-d fetal livers. The liver cells had the typical polygonal morphology of parenchymal hepatocytes. They also spontaneously differentiated to form small biliary canaliculi between individual cells or progressed further to large multicellular duct-like structures or cells undergoing gross lipid accumulation and secretion. The secondary hepatocyte cultures expressed alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), albumin, and beta-fibrinogen mRNA, and conditioned medium from the cells contained elevated levels of transferrin and albumin. STO feeder cell co-culture may be useful for the sustainable culture of hepatocytes from other species.

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