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Mammalian Intestinal Epithelial Cells in Primary Culture: A Mini-Review
In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology. Animal
Vol. 38, No. 3 (Mar., 2002), pp. 123-134
Published by: Society for In Vitro Biology
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4295319
Page Count: 12
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Epithelial cells lining the digestive tract represent a highly organized system built up by multipotent stem cells. A process of asymmetric mitosis produces a population of proliferative cells that are rapidly renewed and migrate along the crypt-villus axis, differentiating into functional mature cells before dying and exfoliating into the intestinal lumen. Isolated crypts or epithelial cells retaining high viability can be prepared within a few h after tissue sampling. After cells are cultured in serum-free media, short-term studies (16-48 h) can be conducted for endocrinology, energy metabolism, or programmed cell death. However, long-term primary culture of intestinal cells (up to 10 d) is still difficult despite progress in isolation methodologies and manipulation of the cell microenvironment. The main problem in developing primary culture is the lack of structural markers specific to the stem cell compartment. The design of a microscopic multidimensional analytic system to record the expression profiles of biomarkers all along the living intestinal crypt should improve basic knowledge of the survival and growth of adult crypt stem cells, and the selection of totipotent embryonic stem cells capable of differentiating into intestinal tissues should facilitate studies of the genomic basis of endodermal tissue differentiation.
In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology. Animal © 2002 Society for In Vitro Biology