Improved Method for Isolating Stem Cells from Adult Tissues

LSU Reference: 0916


Current methods of purifying stem cells heavily rely on marker-dependent cell sorting techniques. The major problem of such technologies is the adult stem cells lack unique, specific, and easily detectable markers. Additionally, this sorting process can cause cell damage, resulting in a low recovery rate or loss of stem cell function, and can require expensive equipment. Other purifying methods are based on colony formation properties or unreliable parameters such as cell adherence, size, or density. These methods are labor intensive, time consuming or incompatible with large scale purification; or they lack adequate specificity.This novel process selectively kills or eliminates non-stem cells from a heterogeneous cell population (one with both stem cells and non-stem cells) so that stem cells can be isolated. By subjecting a heterogeneous cell population to appropriate stress, non-stem cells are selectively eliminated thus resulting in the enrichment of stem cells in the population. Researchers have demonstrated that by using this novel process, a greater percentage of the cells remaining after the applied stress are stem cells, based on traditional stem cell markers and on the ability of the cells to differentiate into multiple types of cells. This method will allow purification of stem cells on a large scale without requirement of expensive equipment, and does not require the presence of cell surface markers. Stem cells produced by this method can be used for clinical applications, including tissue engineering.


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