Intracerebral Cell Implantation: Preparation and Characterization of Cell Suspensions

Cell Transplant. 2016;25(4):645-64. doi: 10.3727/096368915X690350. Epub 2015 Dec 30.


Intracerebral cell transplantation is increasingly finding a clinical translation. However, the number of cells surviving after implantation is low (5-10%) compared to the number of cells injected. Although significant efforts have been made with regard to the investigation of apoptosis of cells after implantation, very little optimization of cell preparation and administration has been undertaken. Moreover, there is a general neglect of the biophysical aspects of cell injection. Cell transplantation can only be an efficient therapeutic approach if an optimal transfer of cells from the dish to the brain can be ensured. We therefore focused on the in vitro aspects of cell preparation of a clinical-grade human neural stem cell (NSC) line for intracerebral cell implantation. NSCs were suspended in five different vehicles: phosphate-buffered saline (PBS), Dulbecco's modified Eagle medium (DMEM), artificial cerebral spinal fluid (aCSF), HypoThermosol, and Pluronic. Suspension accuracy, consistency, and cell settling were determined for different cell volume fractions in addition to cell viability, cell membrane damage, and clumping. Maintenance of cells in suspension was evaluated while being stored for 8 h on ice, at room temperature, or physiological normothermia. Significant differences between suspension vehicles and cellular volume fractions were evident. HypoThermosol and Pluronic performed best, with PBS, aCSF, and DMEM exhibiting less consistency, especially in maintaining a suspension and preserving viability under different storage conditions. These results provide the basis to further investigate these preparation parameters during the intracerebral delivery of NSCs to provide an optimized delivery process that can ensure an efficient clinical translation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Brain*
  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods*
  • Cell Line
  • Humans
  • Neural Stem Cells / classification*
  • Neural Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Stem Cell Transplantation*