• Primate ES cells;
  • Feeder layer;
  • Human placenta;
  • Teratoma


Various undifferentiated embryonic stem (ES) cells can grow on mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF) feeders. However, the risk of zoonosis from animal feeders to human ES cells generally excludes the clinical use of these human ES cells. We have found that human placenta is a useful source of feeder cells for the undifferentiated growth of primate ES cells. As on MEF feeders, primate ES cells cultured on human amniotic epithelial (HAE) feeder cells and human chorionic plate (HCP) cells had undifferentiated growth. The cultured primate ES cells expressed Oct-4, alkaline phosphatase, and SSEA-4. The primate ES cells on HAE feeder cells produced typical immature teratomas in vivo after injection into severe combined immunodeficient mice. Human placenta is quite novel and important because it would provide a relatively available source of feeders for the growth of human ES cells for therapeutic purposes that are also free of ethical complications.