MEFs can be used as feeder cells for the maintenance of embryonic stem (ES) cells and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells in the undifferentiated state while under selection for a hygromycin-resistance marker that has been successfully incorporated into the ES cells or iPS cells. The cells must be mitotically inactivated by irradiation or mitomycin C treatment prior to use as feeder layers. MEFs are resistant to at least 140 μg/mL hygromycin.
Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts; Pluripotent Stem Cells
Cell and Tissue Source:
Data and Publications
Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio) 2009 July
Dax-1 knockdown in mouse embryonic stem cells induces loss of pluripotency and multilineage differentiation.
Dax-1 (Nr0b1) is an orphan member of the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily that has a key role in adrenogonadal development and function. Recent studies have also implicated Dax-1 in the transcriptional network controlling embryonic stem (ES) cell pluripotency. Here, we show that Dax-1 expression is affected by differentiating treatments and pharmacological activation of beta-catenin-dependent transcription in mouse ES cells. Furthermore, Dax-1 knockdown induced upregulation of multilineage differentiation markers, and produced enhanced differentiation and defects in ES viability and proliferation. Through RNA interference and transcriptome analysis, we have identified genes regulated by Dax-1 in mouse ES cells at 24 and 48 hours after knockdown. Strikingly, the great majority of these genes are upregulated, showing that the prevalent function of Dax-1 is to act as a transcriptional repressor in mouse ES cells, as confirmed by experiments using the Gal4 system. Genes involved in tissue differentiation and control of proliferation are significantly enriched among Dax-1-regulated transcripts. These data show that Dax-1 is an essential element in the molecular circuit involved in the maintenance of ES cell pluripotency and have implications for the understanding of stem cell function in both physiological (adrenal gland) and clinical (Ewing tumors) settings where Dax-1 plays a pivotal role in development and pathogenesis, respectively.
Blood 2008 May
Modulation of murine embryonic stem cell-derived CD41+c-kit+ hematopoietic progenitors by ectopic expression of Cdx genes.
Cdx1, Cdx2, and Cdx4 comprise the caudal-like Cdx gene family in mammals, whose homologues regulate hematopoietic development in zebrafish. Previously, we reported that overexpression of Cdx4 enhances hematopoietic potential from murine embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Here we compare the effect of ectopic Cdx1, Cdx2, and Cdx4 on the differentiation of murine ESC-derived hematopoietic progenitors. The 3 Cdx genes differentially influence the formation and differentiation of hematopoietic progenitors within a CD41(+)c-kit(+) population of embryoid body (EB)-derived cells. Cdx1 and Cdx4 enhance, whereas Cdx2 strongly inhibits, the hematopoietic potential of CD41(+)ckit(+) EB-derived cells, changes that are reflected by effects on hematopoietic lineage-specific and Hox gene expression. When we subject stromal cell and colony assay cultures of EB-derived hematopoietic progenitors to ectopic expression of Cdx genes, Cdx4 dramatically enhances, whereas Cdx1 and Cdx2 both inhibit hematopoietic activity, probably by blocking progenitor differentiation. These data demonstrate distinct effects of Cdx genes on hematopoietic progenitor formation and differentiation, insights that we are using to facilitate efforts at in vitro culture of hematopoietic progenitors from ESC. The behavior of Cdx genes in vitro suggests how derangement of these developmental regulators might contribute to leukemogenesis.
Stem cells and development 2008 July
Novel method of murine embryonic stem cell-derived osteoclast development.
Murine embryonic stem (mES) cells are self-renewing pluripotent cells that bear the capacity to differentiate into ectoderm-, endoderm-, and mesoderm-derived tissues. In suspension culture, embryonic stem (ES) cells grow into spherical embryoid bodies (EBs) and are useful for the study of specific gene products in the development and function of various tissue types. Osteoclasts are hematopoietic stem cell-derived cells that participate in bone turnover by secreting resorptive molecules such as hydrochloric acid and acidic proteases, which degrade the bone extracellular matrix. Aberrant osteoclast function leads to dysplastic, erosive, and sclerosing bone diseases. Previous studies have reported the derivation of osteoclasts from mES cells; however, most of these protocols require coculture with stromal cell lines. We describe two simplified, novel methods of stromal cell-independent ES cell-derived osteoclast development.
Journal of cell science 2007 May
Phosphoinositide 3-kinase signalling regulates early development and developmental haemopoiesis.
Phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)-dependent signalling regulates a wide variety of cellular functions including proliferation and differentiation. Disruption of class I(A) PI3K isoforms has implicated PI3K-mediated signalling in development of the early embryo and lymphohaemopoietic system. We have used embryonic stem (ES) cells as an in vitro model to study the involvement of PI3K-dependent signalling during early development and haemopoiesis. Both pharmacological inhibition and genetic manipulation of PI3K-dependent signalling demonstrate that PI3K-mediated signals, most likely via 3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase 1 (PDK1), are required for proliferation of cells within developing embryoid bodies (EBs). Surprisingly, the haemopoietic potential of EB-derived cells was not blocked upon PI3K inhibition but rather enhanced, correlating with modest increases in expression of haemopoietic marker genes. By contrast, PDK1-deficient EB-derived progeny failed to generate terminally differentiated haemopoietic lineages. This deficiency appeared to be due to a requirement for PI3K signalling during the proliferative phase of blast-colony-forming cell (BL-CFC) expansion, rather than as a result of effects on differentiation per se. We also demonstrate that PI3K-dependent signalling is required for optimal generation of erythroid and myeloid progenitors and their differentiation into mature haemopoietic colony types. These data demonstrate that PI3K-dependent signals play important roles at different stages of haemopoietic development.
Differentiation; research in biological diversity 2007 April
Human placenta and bone marrow derived MSC cultured in serum-free, b-FGF-containing medium express cell surface frizzled-9 and SSEA-4 and give rise to multilineage differentiation.
Conventionally, mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are generated by plating cells from bone marrow (BM) or other sources into culture flasks and selecting plastic-adherent cells with fibroblastoid morphology. These cells express CD9, CD10, CD13, CD73, CD105, CD166, and other markers but show only a weak or no expression of the embryonic markers stage-specific embryonic antigen-4 (SSEA-4), Oct-4 and nanog-3. Using a novel protocol we prepared MSC from BM and non-amniotic placenta (PL) by culture of Ficoll-selected cells in gelatin-coated flasks in the presence of a serum-free, basic fibroblast growth factor (b-FGF)-containing medium that was originally designed for the expansion of human embryonic stem cells (ESC). MSC generated in gelatin-coated flasks in the presence of ESC medium revealed a four-to fivefold higher proliferation rate than conventionally prepared MSC which were grown in uncoated flasks in serum-containing medium. In contrast, the colony forming unit fibroblast number was only 1.5- to twofold increased in PL-MSC and not affected in BM-MSC. PL-MSC grown in ESC medium showed an increased surface expression of SSEA-4 and frizzled-9 (FZD-9), an increased Oct-4 and nestin mRNA expression, and an induced expression of nanog-3. BM-MSC showed an induced expression of FZD-9, nanog-3, and Oct-4. In contrast to PL-MSC, only BM-MSC expressed the MSC-specific W8B2 antigen. When cultured under appropriate conditions, these MSC gave rise to functional adipocytes and osteoblast-like cells (mesoderm), glucagon and insulin expressing pancreatic-like cells (endoderm), as well as cells expressing the neuronal markers neuron-specific enolase, glutamic acid decarboxylase-67 (GAD), or class III beta-tubulin, and the astrocyte marker glial fibrillary acidic protein (ectoderm). In conclusion, using a novel protocol we demonstrate that adult BM-and neonatal PL-derived MSC can be induced to express high levels of FZD-9, Oct-4, nanog-3, and nestin and are able of multi-lineage differentiation.
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