The promotion of hepatic maturation of human pluripotent stem cells in 3D co-culture using type I collagen and Swiss 3T3 cell sheets
ABSTRACT Hepatocyte-like cells differentiated from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) or human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are known to be a useful cell source for drug screening. We recently developed an efficient hepatic differentiation method from hESCs and hiPSCs by sequential transduction of FOXA2 and HNF1α. It is known that the combination of three-dimensional (3D) culture and co-culture, namely 3D co-culture, can maintain the functions of primary hepatocytes. However, hepatic maturation of hESC- or hiPSC-derived hepatocyte-like cells (hEHs or hiPHs, respectively) by 3D co-culture systems has not been examined. Therefore, we utilized a cell sheet engineering technology to promote hepatic maturation. The gene expression levels of hepatocyte-related markers (such as cytochrome P450 enzymes and conjugating enzymes) and the amount of albumin secretion in the hEHs or hiPHs, which were 3D co-cultured with the Swiss 3T3 cell sheet, were significantly up-regulated in comparison with those in the hEHs or hiPHs cultured in a monolayer. Furthermore, we found that type I collagen synthesized in Swiss 3T3 cells plays an important role in hepatic maturation. The hEHs or hiPHs that were 3D co-cultured with the Swiss 3T3 cell sheet would be powerful tools for medical applications, such as drug screening.
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ABSTRACT: The field of tissue engineering has been growing in the recent years as more products have made it to the market and as new uses for the engineered tissues have emerged, motivating many researchers to engage in this multidisciplinary field of research. Engineered tissues are now not only considered as end products for regenerative medicine, but also have emerged as enabling technologies for other fields of research ranging from drug discovery to biorobotics. This widespread use necessitates a variety of methodologies for production of tissue engineered constructs. In this review, these methods together with their non-clinical applications will be described. First, we will focus on novel materials used in tissue engineering scaffolds; such as recombinant proteins and synthetic, self assembling polypeptides. The recent advances in the modular tissue engineering area will be discussed. Then scaffold-free production methods, based on either cell sheets or cell aggregates will be described. Cell sources used in tissue engineering and new methods that provide improved control over cell behavior such as pathway engineering and biomimetic microenvironments for directing cell differentiation will be discussed. Finally, we will summarize the emerging uses of engineered constructs such as model tissues for drug discovery, cancer research and biorobotics applications.12/2012; DOI:10.1109/RBME.2012.2233468
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ABSTRACT: Orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) is the most effective therapy for liver failure. However, OLT is severely limited by the shortage of liver donors. Bioartificial liver (BAL) shows great potential as an alternative therapy for liver failure. In recent years, progress has been made in BAL regarding genetically engineered cell lines, immortalized human hepatocytes, methods for preserving the phenotype of primary human hepatocytes, and other functional hepatocytes derived from stem cells. A systematic search of PubMed and ISI Web of Science was performed to identify relevant studies in English language literature using the key words such as liver failure, bioartificial liver, hepatocyte, stem cells, differentiation, and immortalization. More than 200 articles related to the cell sources of hepatocyte in BAL were systematically reviewed. Methods for preserving the phenotype of primary human hepatocytes have been successfully developed. Many genetically engineered cell lines and immortalized human hepatocytes have also been established. Among these cell lines, the incorporation of BAL with GS-HepG2 cells or alginate-encapsulated HepG2 cells could prolong the survival time and improve pathophysiological parameters in an animal model of liver failure. The cBAL111 cells were evaluated using the AMC-BAL bioreactor, which could eliminate ammonia and lidocaine, and produce albumin. Importantly, BAL loading with HepLi-4 cells could significantly improve the blood biochemical parameters, and prolong the survival time in pigs with liver failure. Other functional hepatocytes differentiated from stem cells, such as human liver progenitor cells, have been successfully achieved. Aside from genetically modified liver cell lines and immortalized human hepatocytes, other functional hepatocytes derived from stem cells show great potential as cell sources for BAL. BAL with safe and effective liver cells may be achieved for clinical liver failure in the near future.Hepatobiliary & pancreatic diseases international: HBPD INT 12/2012; 11(6):594-605. DOI:10.1016/S1499-3872(12)60230-6 · 1.17 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Although it is expected that hepatocyte-like cells differentiated from human embryonic stem (ES) cells or induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells will be utilized in drug toxicity testing, the actual applicability of hepatocyte-like cells in this context has not been well examined so far. To generate mature hepatocyte-like cells that would be applicable for drug toxicity testing, we established a hepatocyte differentiation method that employs not only stage-specific transient overexpression of hepatocyte-related transcription factors but also a three-dimensional spheroid culture system using a Nanopillar Plate. We succeeded in establishing protocol that could generate more matured hepatocyte-like cells than our previous protocol. In addition, our hepatocyte-like cells could sensitively predict drug-induced hepatotoxicity, including reactive metabolite-mediated toxicity. In conclusion, our hepatocyte-like cells differentiated from human ES cells or iPS cells have potential to be applied in drug toxicity testing.Biomaterials 12/2012; DOI:10.1016/j.biomaterials.2012.11.029 · 8.31 Impact Factor