Enliven: Journal of Stem Cell Research & Regenerative Medicine

Culturing Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Using Human Fetal Femur Derived Mscs and Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts: A Comparative Study
Author(s): Peggy Matz, Richard OC Oreffo, and James Adjaye

Numerous studies have shown the successful use of human stromal cells as feeders for the propagation of pluripotent stem cells. In this study, we
investigated the use of human fetal femur-derived mesenchymal stem cells (fMSCs) as an alternative to MEFs. We comparatively cultured over several
passages hESCs and iPSCs on fMSCs and MEFs as feeder layers as well as conditioned medium (CM) produced from both cell types. A quality check
for CM is the concentration of secreted Activin A, which is known to support self-renewal of pluripotent stem cells. The level of Activin A in fMSC-CM
was higher compared to MEF-CM when prepared under identical conditions. Furthermore, fMSCs secrete numerous factors amongst these are FGF2,
FGF19, VEGF, PDGF-AA, IL-11 which are involved in proliferation processes. The current study demonstrates that human fMSCs provide several
advantages over MEFs and can be used as an alternative for routine propagation of pluripotent stem cells. Use of fMSC obviates the unnecessary
need for breeding mice solely for the production of MEFs, therefore addressing the important issue of animal usage for MEF generation and most
importantly avoids the risk of contaminating human cells with mouse pathogens.