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Brain Res Dev Brain Res. 1990 Jul 1;54(2):235-48.

Growth factor responses of enriched bipotential glial progenitors.

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Department of Pharmacology-Toxicology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston 77550.


Responses of oligodendrocyte/type 2 astrocyte (O-2A) glial progenitors from neonatal rat brains to different growth factors were studied by a new, serum-free method. Enriched tertiary cultures of O-2A progenitors were produced after 6-7 days in vitro using the growth-promoting factors from the B104 CNS neuronal cell line, heparin, and mechanical separation. These cultures contained about 75-90% A2B5+ cells with less than 10% type 1 astrocytes, and the yield was 4.4 x 10(5) cells/brain. B104 conditioned medium (CM) factors increased both O-2A progenitor number and [3H]thymidine-labeling indices after three days. However, type 1 astrocyte CM was required for continued survival of enriched progenitors beyond 1 day in tertiary culture. Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and glia maturation factor also showed growth-promoting action, but were less effective than B104 CM at tested doses. PDGF-neutralizing antibodies had no effect on progenitor survival or response to B104 CM factors. Thus, type 1 astrocyte-derived PDGF was not required for this response, B104 CM is not likely to contain PDGF, and B104 CM factors act directly on O-2A progenitors. Fibroblast growth factor, transforming growth factor beta, interleukin 2, epidermal growth factor, and triiodothyronine showed no growth-promoting activity; moreover, interleukin 2, epidermal growth factor, transforming growth factor beta, and 0.5% fetal bovine serum inhibited B104 CM action. Enriched progenitors exhibited bipotentiality by slowly differentiating into oligodendrocytes in serum-free medium, whereas culture in 10% fetal bovine serum increased type 2 astrocytes. Thus, this new method selects or produces progenitors which are similar to those from mature brains.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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