The influence of micronutrients in cell culture: a reflection on viability and genomic stability

Biomed Res Int. 2013;2013:597282. doi: 10.1155/2013/597282. Epub 2013 May 27.

Abstract

Micronutrients, including minerals and vitamins, are indispensable to DNA metabolic pathways and thus are as important for life as macronutrients. Without the proper nutrients, genomic instability compromises homeostasis, leading to chronic diseases and certain types of cancer. Cell-culture media try to mimic the in vivo environment, providing in vitro models used to infer cells' responses to different stimuli. This review summarizes and discusses studies of cell-culture supplementation with micronutrients that can increase cell viability and genomic stability, with a particular focus on previous in vitro experiments. In these studies, the cell-culture media include certain vitamins and minerals at concentrations not equal to the physiological levels. In many common culture media, the sole source of micronutrients is fetal bovine serum (FBS), which contributes to only 5-10% of the media composition. Minimal attention has been dedicated to FBS composition, micronutrients in cell cultures as a whole, or the influence of micronutrients on the viability and genetics of cultured cells. Further studies better evaluating micronutrients' roles at a molecular level and influence on the genomic stability of cells are still needed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods*
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Culture Media / pharmacology
  • Genomic Instability / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Micronutrients / pharmacology*

Substances

  • Culture Media
  • Micronutrients