Stage-specific embryonic antigen-4 is not a marker for chondrogenic and osteogenic potential in cultured chondrocytes and mesenchymal progenitor cells

Schrobback, Karsten, Wrobel, Jana, Hutmacher, Dietmar, Woodfield, Tim B. F., & Klein, Travis J. (2013) Stage-specific embryonic antigen-4 is not a marker for chondrogenic and osteogenic potential in cultured chondrocytes and mesenchymal progenitor cells. Tissue Engineering Part A, 19(11&12), pp. 1316-1326.

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One important challenge for regenerative medicine is to produce a clinically relevant number of cells with consistent tissue-forming potential. Isolation and expansion of cells from skeletal tissues results in a heterogeneous population of cells with variable regenerative potential. A more consistent tissue formation could be achieved by identification and selection of potent progenitors based on cell surface molecules. In this study, we assessed the expression of stage-specific embryonic antigen-4 (SSEA-4), a classic marker of undifferentiated stem cells, and other surface markers in human articular chondrocytes (hACs), osteoblasts, and bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (bmMSCs) and characterized their differentiation potential. Further, we sorted SSEA-4-expressing hACs and followed their potential to proliferate and to form cartilage in vitro. Cells isolated from cartilage and bone exhibited remarkably heterogeneous SSEA-4 expression profiles in expansion cultures. SSEA-4 expression levels increased up to approximately 5 population doublings, but decreased following further expansion and differentiation cultures; levels were not related to the proliferation state of the cells. Although SSEA-4-sorted chondrocytes showed a slightly better chondrogenic potential than their SSEA-4-negative counterparts, differences were insufficient to establish a link between SSEA-4 expression and chondrogenic potential. SSEA-4 levels in bmMSCs also did not correlate to the cells' chondrogenic and osteogenic potential in vitro. SSEA-4 is clearly expressed by subpopulations of proliferating somatic cells with a MSC-like phenotype. However, the predictive value of SSEA-4 as a specific marker of superior differentiation capacity in progenitor cell populations from adult human tissue and even its usefulness as a stem cell marker appears questionable.

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ID Code: 60848
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Chondrocytes, Mesenchymal stromal cells, Cell Differentiation, Stage-Specific Embryonic Antigens, Flow cytometry
DOI: 10.1089/ten.TEA.2012.0496
ISSN: 1937-335X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING (090300) > Biomechanical Engineering (090302)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > MEDICAL PHYSIOLOGY (111600) > Cell Physiology (111601)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Chemistry, Physics & Mechanical Engineering
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Publishers
Deposited On: 19 Jun 2013 00:34
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2013 03:25

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