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J Vis Exp. 2017 Mar 22;(121). doi: 10.3791/55243.

Conditional Reprogramming of Pediatric Human Esophageal Epithelial Cells for Use in Tissue Engineering and Disease Investigation.

Author information

Department of Pediatrics, UConn Health;
Department of Pediatrics, UConn Health.
Department of Gastroenterology, Connecticut Children's Medical Center.
Department of Surgery, Connecticut Children's Medical Center.


Identifying and expanding patient-specific cells in culture for use in tissue engineering and disease investigation can be very challenging. Utilizing various types of stem cells to derive cell types of interest is often costly, time consuming and highly inefficient. Furthermore, undesired cell types must be removed prior to using this cell source, which requires another step in the process. In order to obtain enough esophageal epithelial cells to engineer the lumen of an esophageal construct or to screen therapeutic approaches for treating esophageal disease, native esophageal epithelial cells must be expanded without altering their gene expression or phenotype. Conditional reprogramming of esophageal epithelial tissue offers a promising approach to expanding patient-specific esophageal epithelial cells. Furthermore, these cells do not need to be sorted or purified and will return to a mature epithelial state after removing them from conditional reprogramming culture. This technique has been described in many cancer screening studies and allows for indefinite expansion of these cells over multiple passages. The ability to perform esophageal screening assays would help revolutionize the treatment of pediatric esophageal diseases like eosinophilic esophagitis by identifying the trigger mechanism causing the patient's symptoms. For those patients who suffer from congenital defect, disease or injury of the esophagus, this cell source could be used as a means to seed a synthetic construct for implantation to repair or replace the affected region.

[Available on 2019-03-22]
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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