CXCR2 and its related ligands play a novel role in supporting the pluripotency and proliferation of human pluripotent stem cells

Ji Hye Jung, Seung Jin Lee, Jihea Kim, Songhee Lee, Hwa Jung Sung, Jungsuk An, Yong Park, Byung Soo Kim

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) is a crucial factor sustaining human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). We designed this study to search the substitutive factors other than bFGF for the maintenance of hPSCs by using human placenta-derived conditioned medium without exogenous bFGF (hPCCM-), containing chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 2 (CXCR2) ligands, including interleukin (IL)-8 and growth-related oncogene α (GROα), which were developed on the basis of our previous studies. First, we confirmed that IL-8 and/or GROα play independent roles to preserve the phenotype of hPSCs. Then, we tried CXCR2 blockage of hPSCs in hPCCM- and verified the significant decrease of pluripotency-associated genes expression and the proliferation of hPSCs. Interestingly, CXCR2 suppression of hPSCs in mTeSR™1 containing exogenous bFGF decreased the proliferation of hPSCs while maintaining pluripotency characteristics. Lastly, we found that hPSCs proliferated robustly for more than 35 passages in hPCCM- on a gelatin substratum. Higher CXCR2 expression of hPSCs cultured in hPCCM- than those in mTeSR™1 was observable. Our findings suggest that CXCR2 and its related ligands might be novel factors comparable to bFGF supporting the characteristics of hPSCs and hPCCM- might be useful for the maintenance of hPSCs as well as for the accurate evaluation of CXCR2 role in hPSCs without the confounding influence of exogenous bFGF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)948-961
Number of pages14
JournalStem Cells and Development
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Apr 15


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Hematology

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