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Cell Transplant. 2010;19(5):509-23. doi: 10.3727/096368909X485067. Epub 2010 Jan 6.

Worldwide survey of published procedures to culture human embryonic stem cells.

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Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Since their derivation 11 years ago, human embryonic stem (hES) cells have become a powerful tool in both basic biomedical research and developmental biology. Their capacity for self-renewal and differentiation into any tissue type has also brought interest from fields such as cell therapy and drug screening. We conducted an extensive analysis of 750 papers (51% of the total published about hES cells between 1998 and 2008) to present a spectrum of hES cell research including culture protocols developed worldwide. This review may stimulate discussions about the importance of having unvarying methods to culture hES cells, in order to facilitate comparisons among data obtained by research groups elsewhere, especially concerning preclinical studies. Moreover, the description of the most widely used cell lines, reagents, and procedures adopted internationally will help newcomers on deciding the best strategies for starting their own studies. Finally, the results will contribute with the efforts of stem cell researchers on comparing the performance of different aspects related to hES cell culture methods.

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