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Besançon, France

Aupet S.,EA4267 FDE | Simone G.,EA4267 FDE | Heyd B.,EA4267 FDE | Bachellier P.,EA4267 FDE | And 3 more authors.
Tissue Engineering - Part C: Methods

Liver transplantation, utilized routinely for end-stage liver disease, has been constrained by the paucity of organ donors, and is being complemented by alternative strategies such as liver cell transplantation. One of the most promising forms of liver cell transplantation is hepatic stem cell therapies, as the number of human hepatic stem cells (hHpSCs) and other early hepatic progenitor cells (HPCs) are sufficient to provide treatment for multiple patients from a single liver source. In the present study, human adult livers were exposed to cold ischemia and then processed after <24 or 48 h. Cells positive for epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM), a marker on early lineage stage HPCs, were immunoselected and counted. Approximately 100,000 EpCAM+ cells/gram of tissue was obtained from surgical resection of livers subjected to cold ischemia up to 24 h and comparable numbers, albeit somewhat lower, were obtained from those exposed to 48 h of cold ischemia. The yields are similar to those reported from livers with minimal exposure to ischemia. When cultured on plastic dishes and in Kubota's Medium, a serum-free medium designed for early lineage stage HPCs, colonies of rapidly expanding cells formed. They were confirmed to be probable hHpSCs by their ability to survive and expand on plastic and in Kubota's Medium for months, by co-expression of EpCAM and neural cell adhesion molecule, minimal if any albumin expression, with EpCAM found throughout the cells, and no expression of alpha-fetoprotein. The yields of viable EpCAM+ cells were surprisingly large, and the numbers from a single donor liver are sufficient to treat approximately 50-100 patients given the numbers of EpCAM+ cells currently used in hepatic stem cell therapies. Thus, cold ischemic livers for up to 48 h are a new source of cells that might be used for liver cell therapies. © Copyright 2013, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Source

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