Non-pooled Human Platelet Lysate: A Potential Serum Alternative for In Vitro Cell Culture
Serum supplementation is crucial in in vitro cell culture to provide all the essential nutrients needed for cellular processes. Fetal bovine serum (FBS) is considered the 'gold standard', but its production raises serious ethical concerns. Human-derived alternatives to FBS exist in the form of human platelet lysates (hPLs) or human AB serum (ABS). However, these serum products are usually pooled from several donors, in order to have a standardised product without patient-specific deviations. Nevertheless, the use of patient-specific serum in cell culture might be the key to successful transplantation of the cultured cells in medical applications, particularly as it avoids the transmission of infectious components or xenogenic proteins. In addition, the production of non-pooled hPL from single donors is likely to be a cost-effective and time-saving method. The current study used hPL units isolated from single donors and tested their performance as medium supplements for cell culture in comparison with FBS or ABS. This proof-of-concept study aimed to assess the potential of non-pooled hPL for personalised serum supplementation, and thus optimise in vitro models by making them more relevant to human physiology. We showed that A549, HepG2 and Caco-2 human cell lines were generally able to adapt to the new culture conditions and maintain viability, morphology and certain cell-specific characteristics. These results indicate that non-pooled, single patient-derived hPL could be a suitable alternative for in vitro serum supplementation.