Open Access Direct Oxygen Supply With Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) Membranes Induces a Spontaneous Organization of Thick Heterogeneous Liver Tissues From Rat Fetal Liver Cells In Vitro

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Abstract:

Oxygen is a vital nutrient for growth and maturation of in vitro cells (e.g., adult hepatocytes). We previously demonstrated that direct oxygenation through a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membrane increases the oxygen supply to cell cultures and improves hepatocyte functions. In this study, we removed limits on oxygen supply to fetal rat liver cells through the use of direct oxygenation through a PDMS membrane to investigate in vitro growth and maturation. We chose fetal liver cells because they are considered a feasible source of liver progenitor cells for regenerative medicine therapy due to their highly efficient maturation and proliferation. Cells from 17-day-old pregnant rats were cultured under 5% and 21% oxygen atmospheres. Some cells were first cultured under 5% oxygen, and then switched to a 21% oxygen atmosphere. When oxygen supply was enhanced by a PDMS membrane, the rat fetal liver cells organized into a complex tissue composed of an epithelium of hepatocytes above a mesenchyme-like tissue. The thickness of this supportive tissue was directly correlated to oxygen concentration and was thicker under 5% oxygen. When cultures were switched from 5% to 21% oxygen, lumen-containing structures were formed in the thick mesenchymal-like tissue and the albumin secretion rate increased. In addition, cells adapted their glycolytic activity to the oxygen concentrations. This system promoted the formation of a functional and organized thick tissue suitable for use in regenerative medicine.

Keywords: Direct oxygenation; Fetal liver cells; Hepatocyte progenitors; Oxygen concentration; Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/096368911X605303

Affiliations: Laboratory for Integrated Micro-Mechatronic Systems (LIMMS/CNRS-IIS), Institute of Industrial Science, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan

Publication date: February 1, 2012

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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