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Tissue Eng Part C Methods. 2012 Aug;18(8):593-602. doi: 10.1089/ten.TEC.2011.0592. Epub 2012 Apr 3.

Defined xenogeneic-free and hypoxic environment provides superior conditions for long-term expansion of human adipose-derived stem cells.

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Laboratory for Stem Cell Research, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark.


Development and implementation of therapeutic protocols based on stem cells or tissue-engineered products relies on methods that enable the production of substantial numbers of cells while complying with stringent quality and safety demands. In the current study, we aimed to assess the benefits of maintaining cultures of adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) in a defined culture system devoid of xenogeneic components (xeno-free) and hypoxia over a 49-day growth period. Our data provide evidence that conditions involving StemPro mesenchymal stem cells serum-free medium (SFM) Xeno-Free and hypoxia (5% oxygen concentration) in the culture atmosphere provide a superior proliferation rate compared to a standard growth environment comprised of alpha-modified Eagle medium (A-MEM) supplemented with fetal calf serum (FCS) and ambient air (20% oxygen concentration) or that of A-MEM supplemented with FCS and hypoxia. Furthermore, a flow cytometric analysis and in vitro differentiation assays confirmed the immunophenotype stability and maintained multipotency of ASCs when expanded under xeno-free conditions and hypoxia. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that growth conditions utilizing a xeno-free and hypoxic environment not only provide an improved environment for the expansion of ASCs, but also set the stage as a culture system with the potential broad spectrum utility for regenerative medicine and tissue engineering applications.

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