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Research Highlights Featuring Lifeline’s Cell and Media

Semi-Annual Review of Lifeline Cell Systems in 2020

For those of you who follow the blog regularly, you know what time it is! Twice per year, we review some of the ways our cell systems can be used in different types of research. In addition to the three research topics below, we did some special blogs this year, including why Lifeline human umbilical cord endothelial cells (HUVECs) are a great model for studying vascular biology in vitro. We also covered some of the ways Lifeline lung and airway cells can be used to study viral respiratory infection, including coronavirus infection.

Keep reading for the highlights from the first half of 2020…

Deleterious effects of environmental exposure to chemical agents or infrared-A radiation:

In a 2018 study, Prins and colleagues demonstrated that bisphenol-A (BPA) disrupts prostate epithelial stem/progenitor cell homeostasis. Using a rat model, they first demonstrated that combination treatment with BPA and testosterone + estradiol increased the severity of precancerous prostatic lesions after one year. Using prostate spheroids in culture, the authors also showed that BPA treatment resulted in an increased number of prostate stem cells. Finally, using a prostasphere model with Lifeline normal prostate epithelial cells, they showed that in a BrdU label retention assay, 2.5 mM BPA treatment increased the number of prostaspheres with long-term BrdU labeling.

In a 2020 study, Shimizu and co-authors illustrated that infrared-A radiation (IRA) blocks keratinocyte proliferation via mTORC1 inhibition, which promotes photoaging. They used Lifeline human epidermal keratinocytes to show that IRA exposure-induced inhibition of keratinocyte proliferation occurred via cell cycle arrest at G1 and was associated with mTORC1 inactivation. IRA also stimulated formation of stress granules, which the authors illustrated was responsible for the effects on mTORC1 activity.

Tissue engineering, regeneration, and biocompatibility:

In a 2019 study, Zheng and colleagues found that multipotent cells reprogrammed from human dermal fibroblasts using continuous recombinant human fibromodulin (FReP cells) were able to differentiate down the myogenic lineage with low tumorigenic risk. The authors used differentiated Lifeline skeletal muscle satellite cells as a positive control to demonstrate that FReP cells could differentiate into myogenic lineages. Additionally, they showed that FReP cells could form muscle when injected into mice and had reduced tumorigenic potential compared with induced pluripotent stem cells, likely because of expression of the tumor suppressor gene CDKN2B.

In another study from 2019, Siddiqui et al. showed that zirconia (ZrO2) surfaces for dental implants were biocompatible with bacterial and mammalian cells and could be a useful alternative to commercially pure titanium (cpTi), the most common dental implant material. They demonstrated that multiple Streptococcus strains could grow on ZrO2 surfaces and used Lifeline human gingival fibroblasts to show that mammalian cell growth was not impeded on ZrO2  surfaces, confirming their biocompatibility and usefulness as a new dental implant biomaterial.

In a 2020 study, James and co-authors investigated the biocompatibility of Manicaria saccifera palm leaf fibers in tissue engineering applications. Using Lifeline human adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells and Lifeline human aortic smooth muscle cells, they found that M. saccifera fibers provided a surface that supported mammalian cell proliferation with low cytotoxicity. Additionally, the fibers did not induce a significant immunological response, suggesting they may prove to be a novel biotextile for biomedical applications.

The effects of cell surface proteins and bacterial pathogens on angiogenesis:

In a 2020 study, Kapoor and colleagues demonstrated that endorepellin, the C-terminal fragment of the heparan sulfate proteoglycan perlecan, exerts anti-angiogenic behavior through stress signaling. Using Lifeline human umbilical cord endothelial cells (HUVECs), they showed that endorepellin treatment stimulated DNA damage and cellular stress pathways. Furthermore, they found that endorepellin inhibited angiogenesis in an ex vivo model, and this anti-angiogenic activity was dependent on the PERK-GADD45a pathway.

In a second 2020 paper, Reyes et al. characterized the effects of Porphyromonas gingivalis infection on the microvasculature of the oral cavity. In an in vivo rat model, they first showed that over time, P. gingivalis infection caused inflammation and disturbed oral microvascular networks. Using Lifeline human dermal microvascular endothelial cells, the authors found that P. gingivalis infects microvascular endothelial cells in a manner that was dependent on ICAM-1. Their results suggested that P. gingivalis infection occurs through ICAM-1 and causes disruptions to microvascular endothelial networks in the oral cavity, which may contribute to periodontal disease.

As summer kicks off, be sure to come visit us every other week here on the blog to learn how our cells can be used in various types of research applications!

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