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Exp Hematol. 1999 Mar;27(3):496-504.

Extended culture of multipotent hematopoietic progenitors without cytokine augmentation in a novel three-dimensional device.

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  • 1Cytomatrix, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.


The ability to culture multipotent hematopoietic progenitor cells for extended periods is of practical importance to both clinical and research efforts involving these cells. Conventional techniques for the extended culture of hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) have proven largely ineffective in sustaining these cells and preserving their multipotency over protracted periods. To overcome barriers to extended HPC culture, numerous alternative approaches, including cytokine augmentation and co-culture with bone marrow stroma, have been explored to enhance HPC maintenance but have generally yielded mixed results. The present study examined the ability of a novel, three-dimensional, tantalum-coated porous biomaterial (TCPB) to support HPC maintenance and multipotency in long-term cultures to which no exogenous cytokines have been added. As a follow-up to previously published short-term HPC cultures in TCPB, we examined the maintenance, phenotype and multipotency of HPCs cultured for up to 6 weeks in the TCPB matrix compared to control systems, including fibronectin-coated plastic, bone marrow stroma cocultures and other three-dimensional materials. These studies indicated that TCPB supports the maintenance of immature progenitors for up to 6 weeks in the absence of supplemented cytokines. Further, the results demonstrate that the TCPB matrix facilitates and enhances HPC maintenance and leads to a 1.5-fold expansion of HPC numbers following 1 week in culture and a 6.7-fold increase in colony-forming ability following 6 weeks in culture in the absence of exogenous cytokines. Under the same conditions, control systems were less able to support progenitor viability and multipotency. These findings point to new approaches that may improve the in vitro preservation of progenitors and may have important implications in clinical areas such as progenitor expansion, bone marrow transplantation and gene therapy.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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