Get access

Matrigel: A complex protein mixture required for optimal growth of cell culture

Authors

  • Chris S. Hughes,

    1. Don Rix Protein Identification Facility, Department of Biochemistry, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Lynne M. Postovit,

    1. Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Gilles A. Lajoie

    Corresponding author
    1. Don Rix Protein Identification Facility, Department of Biochemistry, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada
    • Don Rix Protein Identification Facility, Department of Biochemistry, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, Ont., N6A 5C1 Canada, Fax: +1-519-661-3954
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

Numerous cell types require a surface for attachment to grow and proliferate. Certain cells, particularly primary and stem cells, necessitate the use of specialized growth matrices along with specific culture media conditions to maintain the cells in an undifferentiated state. A gelatinous protein mixture derived from mouse tumor cells and commercialized as Matrigel is commonly used as a basement membrane matrix for stem cells because it retains the stem cells in an undifferentiated state. However, Matrigel is not a well-defined matrix, and therefore can produce a source of variability in experimental results. In this study, we present an in-depth proteomic analysis of Matrigel using a dynamic iterative exclusion method coupled with fractionation protocols that involve ammonium sulfate precipitation, size exclusion chromatography, and one-dimensional SDS-PAGE. The ability to identify the low mass and abundance components of Matrigel illustrates the utility of this method for the analysis of the extracellular matrix, as well as the complexity of the matrix itself.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary