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Placenta. 2003 Apr;24(4):412-23.

A positive immunoselection method to isolate villous cytotrophoblast cells from first trimester and term placenta to high purity.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy, University Hospital Aachen, Aachen, Germany.


We developed a method for isolating highly pure villous cytotrophoblast cells from first trimester and term placenta that excludes extravillous trophoblast and syncytiotrophoblast fragments. The method is based on positive immunoselection using an antibody (mAb C76/18) reacting with hepatocyte growth factor activator inhibitor 1, HAI-1, a membrane antigen on villous cytotrophoblast. As a comparison, we also immunopurified cells using an antibody against CD105, present on syncytiotrophoblast and some extravillous trophoblast cells. The isolates were characterized by flow cytometry. HAI-1-positive cells from first trimester and term placentae were highly pure (>98 per cent cytokeratin 7-positive) mononuclear trophoblast cells. These isolations were contaminated with only very small percentages of vimentin and CD45-positive cells. HAI-1-positive trophoblast cells lacked CD105 and also HLA class I, a marker for extravillous trophoblast. In culture HAI-1-positive cells adhered, displayed an epithelial morphology, and survived for more than three days. In contrast, CD105-positive cell fractions from first trimester placenta were a heterogeneous mixture of mononuclear and multinuclear elements consisting of syncytiotrophoblast fragments, extravillous trophoblast cells, as well as around 5 per cent non-trophoblastic contaminants. In conclusion, the positive immunoselection method using antibody C76/18 yielded highly pure villous cytotrophoblast cells devoid of elements derived from syncytiotrophoblast or extravillous trophoblast.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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