Characterisation of human fibroblasts as keratinocyte feeder layer using p63 isoforms status.
ABSTRACT Large-scale culture of primary keratinocytes allows the production of large epidermal sheet surfaces for the treatment of extensive skin burns. This method is dependent upon the capacity to establish cultures of proliferating keratinocytes in conditions compatible with their clonal expansion while maintaining their capacity to differentiate into the typical squamous pattern of human epidermis. Feeder layers are critical in this process because the fibroblasts that compose this layer serve as a source of adhesion, growth and differentiation factors. In this report, we have characterise the expression patterns of p63 isoforms in primary keratinocytes cultured on two different feeder layer systems, murine 3T3 and human fibroblasts. We show that with the latter, keratinocytes express a higher ratio of Delta N to TAp63 isoform, in relation with higher clonogenic potential. These results indicate that human fibroblasts represent an adequate feeder layer system to support the culture of primary human keratinocytes.
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ABSTRACT: A fibroblast feeder layer is currently the best option for large scale expansion of autologous skin keratinocytes that are to be used for the treatment of severely burned patients. In a clinical context, using a human rather than a mouse feeder layer is desirable to reduce the risk of introducing animal antigens and unknown viruses. This study was designed to evaluate if irradiated human fibroblasts can be used in keratinocyte cultures without affecting their morphological and physiological properties. Keratinocytes were grown either with or without a feeder layer in serum-containing medium. Our results showed that keratinocytes grown either on an irradiated human feeder layer or irradiated 3T3 cells (i3T3) can be cultured for a comparable number of passages. The average epithelial cell size and morphology were also similar. On the other hand, keratinocytes grown without a feeder layer showed heavily bloated cells at early passages and stop proliferating after only a few passages. On the molecular aspect, the expression level of the transcription factor Sp1, a useful marker of keratinocytes lifespan, was maintained and stabilized for a high number of passages in keratinocytes grown with feeder layers whereas Sp1 expression dropped quickly without a feeder layer. Furthermore, gene profiling on microarrays identified potential target genes whose expression is differentially regulated in the absence or presence of an i3T3 feeder layer and which may contribute at preserving the growth characteristics of these cells. Irradiated human dermal fibroblasts therefore provide a good human feeder layer for an effective expansion of keratinocytes in vitro that are to be used for clinical purposes.International Journal of Molecular Sciences 01/2013; 14(3):4684-704. · 2.46 Impact Factor