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Open Access Improved Method of Producing Human Neural Progenitor Cells of High Purity and in Large Quantities From Pluripotent Stem Cells for Transplantation Studies

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Transplantation of human neural progenitor cells (hNPCs) is a promising therapeutic approach for various diseases of the central nervous system (CNS). Reliable testing of hNPC transplantation in animal models of neurological diseases requires that these cells can be produced in sufficient amounts, show consistent homogeneity as a neural cell population, and be reliably labeled for in vivo tracking. In addition, the cells should be characterized as being at the optimal state of differentiation favoring successful engraftment. Here, we show that high numbers of purified hNPCs can be produced from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) by manually selecting specifically sized and shaped spheres followed by fluorescence-activated cell sorting based on the relative cell size. In addition, we report that labeling of hNPCs with ultra-small superparamagnetic iron oxide (USPIO) particles does not affect the cellular morphology or growth. More importantly, we show that the transduction with lentiviral vector encoding green fluorescent protein (GFP) decreases the neurality of the cell population. We conclude that our cost-effective protocol of generating hNPCs is widely applicable for preclinical studies on CNS disorders. This improved method of producing large quantities of high-purity hNPCs maybe useful also when generating hNPCs from human induced pluripotent stem (hiPS) cell lines. However, caution should be used when lenti-GFP transduction is applied for hNPC labeling.

Keywords: Cell transplantation; Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs); Neural differentiation; Neural progenitors

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2013-10-04

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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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