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Cell preservation methods and its application to studying rare disease

Lookup NU author(s): Becky Dewhurst, Dr Elisa MolinariORCiD, Professor John SayerORCiD


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© 2021 Elsevier LtdThe ability to preserve and transport human cells in a stable medium over long distances is critical to collaborative efforts and the advancement of knowledge in the study of human disease. This is particularly important in the study of rare diseases. Recently, advancements in the understanding of renal ciliopathies has been achieved via the use of patient urine-derived cells (UDCs). However, the traditional method of cryopreservation, although considered as the gold standard, can result in decreased sample viability of many cell types, including UDCs. Delays in transportation can have devastating effects upon the viability of samples, and may even result in complete destruction of cells following evaporation of dry ice or liquid nitrogen, leaving samples in cryoprotective agents, which are cytotoxic at room temperature. The loss of any patient sample in this manner is detrimental to research, however it is even more so when samples are from patients with a rare disease. In order to overcome the associated limitations of traditional practices, new methods of preservation and shipment, including cell encapsulation within hydrogels, and transport in specialised devices are continually being investigated. Here we summarise and compare traditional methods with emerging novel alternatives for the preservation and shipment of cells, and consider the effectiveness of such methods for use with UDCs to further enable the study and understanding of kidney diseases.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Dewhurst RM, Molinari E, Sayer JA

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Molecular and Cellular Probes

Year: 2021

Volume: 56

Print publication date: 01/04/2021

Online publication date: 09/01/2021

Acceptance date: 05/01/2021

ISSN (print): 0890-8508

ISSN (electronic): 1096-1194

Publisher: Academic Press


DOI: 10.1016/j.mcp.2021.101694

PubMed id: 33429040