Author(s): Narkilahti S, Rajala K, Pihlajamki H, Suuronen R, Hovatta O,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND: Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are a potential source of cells for use in regenerative medicine. Automation of culturing, monitoring and analysis is crucial for fast and reliable optimization of hESC culturing methods. Continuous monitoring of living cell cultures can reveal more information and is faster than using laborious traditional methods such as microscopic evaluation, immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry. METHODS: We analyzed the growth dynamics of two hESC lines HS237 and HS293 in a conventional culture medium containing serum replacement and a xeno-free X-vivo 10 medium. We used a new automated culture platform utilizing machine vision technology, which enables automatic observation, recording and analysis of intact living cells. We validated the results using flow cytometry for cell counting and characterization. RESULTS: In our analyses, hESC colony growth could be continuously monitored and the proportion of undifferentiated cells automatically analyzed. No labeling was needed and we could, for the first time, perform detailed follow up of live, undisturbed cell colonies, and record all the events in the culture. The growth rate of the hESCs cultured in X-vivo 10 medium was significantly lower and a larger proportion of the cells were differentiated. CONCLUSION: The new automated system enables rapid and reliable analysis of undifferentiated growth dynamics of hESCs. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the system by comparing hESC growth in different culture conditions.
This article was published in Biomed Eng Online
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Cardiology