Requirements for growth of single human cells

Science. 1959 Jan 30;129(3344):252-4. doi: 10.1126/science.129.3344.252.


A minimal growth medium supplemented with dialyzed serum, which sufficed for the propagation of a wide variety of human cell strains in heavily inoculated monolayer and suspension cultures, did not permit the regular or optimal growth of small numbers of HeLa, HeLa S3, conjunctiva, or KB cells deriving from suspension cultures. At threshold concentrations of serum, the plating efficiency of single cells was greatly reduced as compared with their plating efficiency in a medium containing dialyzed serum instead of whole serum, and the clones which did develop grew at a slower rate. The nutritional deficiency could be overcome by adding the seven amino acids which are ordinarily not nutritionally essential. In most of the experiments serine alone sufficed.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acids / pharmacology*
  • Cell Culture Techniques*
  • Clone Cells*
  • Culture Media*
  • Humans
  • Serine*
  • Tissue Culture Techniques / drug effects*


  • Amino Acids
  • Culture Media
  • Serine