Gastrointestinal Cell Lines Form Polarized Epithelia with an Adherent Mucus Layer when Cultured in Semi-Wet Interfaces with Mechanical Stimulation
AuthorNavabi, N; McGuckin, MA; Linden, SK
Source TitlePLoS One
PublisherPUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE
University of Melbourne Author/sMcGuckin, Michael
AffiliationMedicine Dentistry & Health Sciences
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsNavabi, N., McGuckin, M. A. & Linden, S. K. (2013). Gastrointestinal Cell Lines Form Polarized Epithelia with an Adherent Mucus Layer when Cultured in Semi-Wet Interfaces with Mechanical Stimulation. PLOS ONE, 8 (7), https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0068761.
Access StatusOpen Access
Mucin glycoproteins are secreted in large quantities by mucosal epithelia and cell surface mucins are a prominent feature of the glycocalyx of all mucosal epithelia. Currently, studies investigating the gastrointestinal mucosal barrier use either animal experiments or non-in vivo like cell cultures. Many pathogens cause different pathology in mice compared to humans and the in vitro cell cultures used are suboptimal because they are very different from an in vivo mucosal surface, are often not polarized, lack important components of the glycocalyx, and often lack the mucus layer. Although gastrointestinal cell lines exist that produce mucins or polarize, human cell line models that reproducibly create the combination of a polarized epithelial cell layer, functional tight junctions and an adherent mucus layer have been missing until now. We trialed a range of treatments to induce polarization, 3D-organization, tight junctions, mucin production, mucus secretion, and formation of an adherent mucus layer that can be carried out using standard equipment. These treatments were tested on cell lines of intestinal (Caco-2, LS513, HT29, T84, LS174T, HT29 MTX-P8 and HT29 MTX-E12) and gastric (MKN7, MKN45, AGS, NCI-N87 and its hTERT Clone5 and Clone6) origins using Ussing chamber methodology and (immuno)histology. Semi-wet interface culture in combination with mechanical stimulation and DAPT caused HT29 MTX-P8, HT29 MTX-E12 and LS513 cells to polarize, form functional tight junctions, a three-dimensional architecture resembling colonic crypts, and produce an adherent mucus layer. Caco-2 and T84 cells also polarized, formed functional tight junctions and produced a thin adherent mucus layer after this treatment, but with less consistency. In conclusion, culture methods affect cell lines differently, and testing a matrix of methods vs. cell lines may be important to develop better in vitro models. The methods developed herein create in vitro mucosal surfaces suitable for studies of host-pathogen interactions at the mucosal surface.
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