Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Giant Panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) Buccal Mucosa Tissue as a Source of Multipotent Progenitor Cells

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Aaron Ions GardnerORCiD, Professor Colin Jahoda



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Since the first mammal was cloned, the idea of using this technique to help endangered specieshas aroused considerable interest. However, several issues limit this possibility, including therelatively low success rate at every stage of the cloning process, and the dearth of usable tissuesfrom these rare animals. iPS cells have been produced from cells from a number of raremammalian species and this is the method of choice for strategies to improve cloning efficiencyand create new gametes by directed differentiation. Nevertheless information about other stemcell/progenitor capabilities of cells from endangered species could prove important for future conservation approaches and adds to the knowledge base about cellular material that can be extremely limited. Multipotent progenitor cells, termed skin-derived precursor (SKP) cells, can beisolated directly from mammalian skin dermis, and human cheek tissue has also been shown to be a good source of SKP-like cells. Recently we showed that structures identical to SKPs termed m-SKPs could be obtained from monolayer/ two dimensional (2D) skin fibroblast cultures. Here weaimed to isolate m-SKPs from cultured cells of three endangered species; giant panda (Ailuropodamelanoleuca); red panda (Ailurus fulgens); and Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica). m-SKP-likespheres were formed from the giant panda buccal mucosa fibroblasts; whereas dermal fibroblast(DF) cells cultured from abdominal skin of the other two species were unable to generate spheres.Under specific differentiation culture conditions giant panda spheres expressed neural, Schwann,adipogenic and osteogenic cell markers. Furthermore, these buccal mucosa derived spheres were shown to maintain expression of SKP markers: nestin, versican, fibronectin, and P75 and switchon expression of the stem cell marker ABCG2. These results demonstrate that giant panda cheekskin can be a useful source of m-SKP multipotent progenitors. At present lack of sample numbersmeans that we can only postulate why we were unable to obtain m-SKPs from the lion and redpanda cultures. However the giant panda observations point to the value of archiving cells from rarespecies, and the possibilities for later progenitor cell derivation.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Prescott HMA, Manning C, Gardner A, Ritchie WA, Pizzi R, Girling S, Valentine I, Wang C, Jahoda CAB

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: PLoS ONE

Year: 2015

Volume: 10

Issue: 9

Online publication date: 23/09/2015

Acceptance date: 03/09/2015

Date deposited: 05/10/2015

ISSN (electronic): 1932-6203

Publisher: Public Library of Science


DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0138840

PubMed id: 26398672


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric