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Marrow stromal cells cultured in N2-supplemented medium: implications on the generation of neural cells
INTRODUCTION. Most of the culture system for in vitro maintenance and neural differentiation of marrow stromal cells (MSCs) use synthetic media supplemented with 10 or 20% fetal bovine serum (FBS). Serum, however, is comprised of unknown quantities of undefined substances which could interfere the effect of exogenous substances on neural differentiation of MSCs.
AIM. Here we describe survival of MSCs cultured in culture conditions where serum was reduced at 0.5 and 1% using Bottenstein and Sato’s N2 formula (1979) and poly-L-lysine (PLL)-coated substrate. MATERIALS AND METHODS. Stromal cells isolated from rat femurs were cultivated in Dulbecco’s modified Eagle medium at 10, 1, 0.5% FBS or in serum free medium containing N2 formula. In serum free medium or at low serum concentration culture surface was coated with PLL. Cell survival was determined by MTT method or by counting viable cells.
RESULTS. Survival of MSCs cultured in N2 supplement was reduced at about 40% of that observed in 10% FBS containing medium. Under these conditions cell morphology was also affected. When N2 containing medium was supplemented with FBS at 0.5 or 1% a significant increase of survival with respect to that observed in N2-supplemented cultures was observed. Cells seeded on PLL-coated surface increased their survival by contrast with their homologous cultures seeded on uncoated surface.
CONCLUSIONS. The culture system which combines N2 formula with FBS 1% and PLL-coated surface is useful for the maintenance of MSCs. These conditions offer advantages for the study of differentiation of these cells because they reduce the confounding influence of serum. The possible implication of this culture system for the study of neural differentiation by these cells is discussed.
Cell cultureFetal bovine serumMarrow stromal cellsN2 supplementSurvival