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Functional immobilization of signaling proteins enables control of stem cell fate

Alberti, Kristin and Davey, Ryan E and Onishi, Kento and George, Sophia and Salchert, Katrin and Seib, F Philipp and Bornhäuser, Martin and Pompe, Tilo and Nagy, Andras and Werner, Carsten and Zandstra, Peter W (2008) Functional immobilization of signaling proteins enables control of stem cell fate. Nature Methods, 5 (7). pp. 645-650.

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Abstract

The mode of ligand presentation has a fundamental role in organizing cell fate throughout development. We report a rapid and simple approach for immobilizing signaling ligands to maleic anhydride copolymer thin-film coatings, enabling stable signaling ligand presentation at interfaces at defined concentrations. We demonstrate the utility of this platform technology using leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and stem cell factor (SCF). Immobilized LIF supported mouse embryonic stem cell (mESC) pluripotency for at least 2 weeks in the absence of added diffusible LIF. Immobilized LIF activated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling in a dose-dependent manner. The introduced method allows for the robust investigation of cell fate responses from interface-immobilized ligands.