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Exp Cell Res. 1984 Sep;154(1):310-4.

Newborn human skin fibroblasts senesce in vitro without acquiring adult growth factor requirements.


Cultures of human fibroblasts were prepared from chest skin obtained either from newborns (less than 3 months old) or adults (more than 35 years old) and maintained in vitro until they senesced. Adult cells grew logarithmically in medium supplemented with whole blood serum but not with platelet-poor plasma. Early passage cells obtained from newborns grew equally well in either plasma- or serum-supplemented medium. The difference in growth factor requirements between adult and newborn cells persisted through the lifespan of the cells; i.e., newborn cells did not develop adult hormonal requirements when maintained in culture. Thus, in vitro cellular aging can be distinguished from some types of differentiation.

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