Translational Biomedicine

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A Xeno-Free, Serum-Free Expansion Medium for Ex-vivo Expansion and Maintenance of Major Human Tissue-Derived Mesenchymal Stromal Cells

Lopes Vanda S*, Annie Ngo and Hsiao-Tzu Ni

Introduction: MSCs, one of the most useful stem cell type for clinical applications, can be derived from various adult tissues. While sharing the same basic properties, there are however differences in their proliferative capacity, degree of potency and level of multipotent marker expression and immunosuppression ability. As the cell media industry continues to develop effective serum-free cell culture media, an understanding of the potential effect on MSCs profile and functionality is needed.

Methods and Findings: MSCs derived from adipose tissue, bone marrow and umbilical cord were grown in FBS containing media, or a newly-developed XSFM and characterized by flow cytometry, immunomodulation and differentiation assays. In this study we have found that each source of MSCs had a different cell expansion profile, but cells grown in XSFM reach higher cumulative cell numbers. No significant difference was noted in the expression profile of CD45, CD105 and CD90 and cells retained their differentiation and their immunomodulatory potential. BM-derived MCSs had a relatively weaker immunomodulatory potential, but this could be improved when cells were cultured in XSFM.

Conclusion: In conclusion, the developed XSFM for human MSCs provides a superior alternative for clinical applications with multiple cell origins, by eliminating the drawbacks of sera usage, while leading to higher cumulative cell numbers and maintaining the cell characteristics.