Derivation of human trophoblast stem cells from placentas at birth

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Human trophoblast stem cells (hTSCs) have emerged as a powerful tool for modeling the placental cytotrophoblast (CTB) in vitro. hTSCs were originally derived from CTBs of the first trimester placenta or blastocyst-stage embryos in trophoblast stem cell medium (TSCM) that contains epidermal growth factor (EGF), the glycogen synthase kinase-beta (GSK3β) inhibitor CHIR99021, the transforming growth factor-beta (TGFβ) inhibitors A83-01 and SB431542, valproic acid (VPA), and the Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK) inhibitor Y-27632. Here we show that hTSCs can be derived from CTBs isolated from the term placenta, using TSCM supplemented with a low concentration of mitochondrial pyruvate uptake inhibitor UK5099 and lipid-rich albumin (TUA medium). Notably, hTSCs could not be derived from term CTBs using TSCM alone, or in the absence of either UK5099 or lipid-rich albumin. Strikingly, hTSCs cultured in TUA medium for a few passages could be transitioned into TSCM and cultured thereafter in TSCM. hTSCs from term CTBs cultured in TUA medium as well as those transitioned into and cultured in TSCM thereafter could be differentiated to the extravillous trophoblast and syncytiotrophoblast lineages and exhibited high transcriptome similarity with hTSCs derived from first trimester CTBs. We anticipate that these results will enable facile derivation of hTSCs from normal and pathological placentas at birth with diverse genetic backgrounds and facilitate in vitro mechanistic studies in trophoblast biology.

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