AMC develops stem cell evaluation technology < Hospital < 기사본문 – Korea Biomedical Review

Researchers at Asan Medical Center (AMC) have developed a stem cell evaluation technology that can increase stem cell treatment success rate.

A research team at Asan Medical Center, led by Professors Kim Joon-ki (left) and Baek Chan-ki, has developed an evaluation technology that can increase stem cell treatment success rate.

Stem cell-based regenerative medicine and tissue engineering treatment are receiving great attention. However, to develop an innovative stem cell therapy with a high therapeutic success rate, researchers need to evaluate stem cell characteristics in advance efficiently.

As a solution, the team conducted a 3D real-time analysis of organelle characteristics of stem cells of different origins using a new microscopy technique called optical diffraction tomography (ODT), the hospital said on Tuesday.

Professors Kim Joon-ki and Baek Chan-ki of the Department of Convergence Medicine led the study.

The ODT is a technique that reproduces an image in a hologram method using scattered light obtained by irradiating light on transparent cells and a standard light source and has the advantage of quantifying the refractive index and volume of cells and intracellular organelles.

Unlike observing cell characteristics with a conventional fluorescence microscope or electron microscope, the technique distinguishes normal and stem cells without fluorescence staining or other invasive treatment.

In developing ODT, the team selected three types of stem cells — liver-derived stem cells, umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells, and induced pluripotent stem cells — and compared them to fibroblasts.

The researchers identified the refractive index of the selected sample cells using the ODT technique and obtained 3D image information based on this result. Afterward, the researchers quantified the refractive index and volume information of organelles such as vesicles, nucleolus, cytoplasm, and adipose droplets of the sample cells through additional image analysis.

The analysis results showed that the three types of stem cells had large and very dense vesicles, unlike the fibroblasts of the control group.

Also, depending on the type of stem cell, the distribution of the number of vesicles and the volume of cells and nucleolus was different, suggesting that each stem cell organelle of different origin has physically unique characteristics.

“We can also apply the technology, based on a label-free method and a three-dimensional holographic image, to various cell samples obtained in clinical settings, such as biopsies and blood,” Professor Kim said. “By quantifying the organelle characteristics specific to a disease, we expect that the technology will have a wide use in diagnosing various diseases.”

The research was published in the latest issue of Molecules and Cells, which selected the three-dimensional image of characteristic organelles of stem cells as its cover.


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