Validation of reference and identity-defining genes in human mesenchymal stem cells cultured under unrelated fetal bovine serum batches for basic science and clinical application

Federica Banfi, Alessandra Colombini, Carlotta Perucca Orfei, Valentina Parazzi, Enrico Ragni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The molecular profile of human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have emerged as a key factor in defining their identity. Nevertheless, the effect of fetal bovine serum (FBS) batches or origin on MSC molecular signature has been neglected. In this frame, chemical fingerprint of FBS batches from unrelated countries showed strong correlation between chemical composition and country of origin. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate in stem cells isolated from bone marrow (BMMSCs) and umbilical cord-blood (CBMSCs) the effects of independently collected FBS batches on both twelve commonly used reference genes (RGs) and a selected panel of thirty-eight genes crucial for MSC definition in both research and clinical settings. Gene expression stability was estimated comparing the outcomes of two applets: geNorm and NormFinder. The bioinformatics analysis emphasized that, in a panorama of general balance, few RG candidates (YWHAZ/UBC for BMMSCs, RPLP0/EF1A for CBMSCs and EF1A/TBP for both MSCs scored together) showed superior stability. In addition, a wider study on genes involved in differentiation/proliferation/stemness processes, often used to define MSC potency, showed that these genes exhibited no major transcriptional modulation after treatment with different FBS, and allowed the identification of genes strongly discriminating between BM- and CBMSC populations. Therefore, in conclusion, FBS origin does not dramatically impact the general molecular profile of MSCs, although we could identify validated candidates able to allow more reliable comparison of data regarding MSC identity and potency and obtained by research laboratories and clinical manufacturers using different sera.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837-846
Number of pages10
JournalStem Cell Reviews and Reports
Volume14
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • bone marrow
  • fetal bovine serum
  • gene expression
  • GMP
  • mesenchymal stem cells
  • qRT-PCR
  • reference genes
  • umbilical cord blood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research

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