Amniotic Fluid-Derived Stem Cells Demonstrated Cardiogenic Potential in Indirect Co-culture with Human Cardiac Cells

Yang Gao, Jennifer Petsche Connell, Lalita Wadhwa, Rodrigo Ruano, Jeffrey G. Jacot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations


Amniotic fluid-derived stem cells (AFSC) have been shown to be broadly multipotent and non-tumorogenic. Previous studies of direct mixing of AFSC and neonatal rat ventricle myocytes indicated evidence of AFSC cardiogenesis. In this study, we examined human AFSC cardiogenic potential in indirect co-culture with human cardiac cells in conditions that eliminated the possibility of cell fusion. Human AFSC in contact with human cardiac cells showed expression of cardiac troponin T (cTnT) in immunohistochemistry, and no evidence of cell fusion was found through fluorescent in situ hybridization. When indirectly co-cultured with cardiac cells, human AFSC in contact with cardiac cells across a thin porous membrane showed a statistically significant increase in cTnT expression compared to non-contact conditions but lacked upregulation of calcium modulating proteins and did not have functional or morphological characteristics of mature cardiomyocytes. This suggests that contact is a necessary but not sufficient condition for AFSC cardiac differentiation in co-culture with cardiac cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2490-2500
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 21 2014



  • Cardiac progenitor cells
  • Cardiomyocytes
  • Congenital heart defects
  • Pediatric tissue engineering
  • Right ventricular out flow tract

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering

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