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First steps towards the successful surface-based cultivation of human embryonic stem cells in hanging drop systems

: Schulz, J.C.; Stumpf, P.S.; Katsen-Globa, A.; Sachinidis, A.; Hescheler, J.; Zimmermann, H.


Engineering in life sciences 12 (2012), No.6, pp.584-587
ISSN: 1618-2863
ISSN: 1618-0240
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IBMT ()

Miniaturization and parallelization of cell culture procedures are in focus of research in order to develop test platforms with low material consumption and increased standardization for toxicity and drug screenings. The cultivation in hanging drops (HDs) is a convenient and versatile tool for biological applications and represents an interesting model system for the screening applications due to its uniform shape, the advantageous gas supply, and the small volume. However, its application has so far been limited to non#x02010;adherent and aggregate forming cells. Here, we describe for the first time the proof-of-principle regarding the adherent cultivation of human embryonic stem cells in HD. For this microcarriers were added to the droplet as dynamic cultivation surfaces resulting in a maintained pluripotency and proliferation capacity for 10 days. This enables the HD technique to be extended to the cultivation of adherence-dependent stem cells. Also, the possible automation of this method by implementation of liquid handling systems opens new possibilities for miniaturized screenings, the improvement of cultivation and differentiation conditions, and toxicity and drug development.