Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Acronym in cytology and organogenesis: SFEBq for serum-free floating culture of embryoid body-like aggregate with quick reaggregation

SFEBq stands for serum-free floating culture of embryoid body-like aggregate with quick reaggregation. A complex acronym for a complex process! This cell-aggregation process occurs in three-dimensional culture solutions (instead of  single-layer dish cultures), wherein floating stem cells self-assemble into complex tissue topologies—depending on fine-tuned experimental conditions and supply of chemical precursor compounds. SFEBq technology was developed to explore artificial growth of  protoretina resembling the neural retina in mammalian eyes [1-4].

The successful SFEBq-driven retina growth, including the development of the optic vesicle and its structural collapse to form the optic cup, demonstrates that building and shaping of a retina can occur without support from neighboring tissues such as lens cell. In the words of Yoshika Sasai, a neurobiologist at RIKEN Center for Develiopment Biology in Kobe, Japan [4], “retinal formation, at least in vitro, is a self-organizing phenomenon based on an internal program that resides within these cells.” 

Keywords: molecular neurobiology, organogenesis, neurogenesis, compound tissue, neuroepithelium, mammalian embryogenesis, embryonic stem cells.

References, cell-adhesion figures,  schematic diagram and further reading
[1]  M. Eiraku , N. Takata, H. Ishibashi, M. Kawada, E. Sakakura, S. Okuda, K. Sekiguchi, T. Adachi and Y. Sasai: Self-organizing optic-cup morphogenesis in three-dimensional culture. Nature April 7, 2011, 472, 51-56.
DOI: 10.1038/nature09941.
[2] Kurzweil Accelerating Intelligence: Stem cells used to create retinal tissue. April 7, 2011 []. 
[3] M. Eiraku and Y. Sasai: Mouse embryonic stem cell culture for generation of three-dimensional retinal and cortical tissues. Nature Protocols 2012, 7, 69-79.
DOI: 10.1038/nprot.2011.429.
[4] Y. Sasai: Grow Your Own Eye. Scientific American November 2012, 307 (5), 44-49.
DOI: 10.1038/scientificamerican1112-44.

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