Rapid and Efficient Production of Human Functional Mast Cells through a Three-Dimensional Culture of Adipose Tissue-Derived Stromal Vascular Cells

J Immunol. 2018 Dec 15;201(12):3815-3821. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1701751. Epub 2018 Nov 16.


Mast cells (MC) are innate immune cells involved in many physiological and pathological processes. However, studies of MC function and biology are hampered by the difficulties to obtain human primary MC. To solve this problem, we established a new method to produce easily and rapidly high numbers of MC for in vitro studies using human adipose tissue, which is an abundant and easy access tissue. Stromal vascular fraction of adipose tissue, obtained from human abdominal dermolipectomy, was cultured as spheroids in serum free medium supplemented in stem cell factor. Using this method, we generated, within 3 wk, a highly pure population of connective tissue-type MC expressing MC typical peptidases (tryptase, chymase, and carboxypeptidase-A3) with a yield increasing over time. Stem cell factor was required for this culture, but unlike MC derived from CD34+ cells, this culture did not depend on IL-3 and -6. MC obtained with this method degranulated following FcεRI cross-linking or stimulation by C5a, compound 48/80, and substance P. Interestingly, activation by anti-IgE of both white adipose tissue-MC and MC obtained from peripheral blood-derived CD34+ pluripotent progenitor cells induced the production of PGs as well as proinflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, Il-6, and GM-CSF). In conclusion, we developed a new time saving and reproducible method to produce highly pure and functional human MC in 3 wk from human adipose tissue.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abdomen / pathology*
  • Abdomen / surgery
  • Adipose Tissue / cytology*
  • Adipose Tissue / surgery
  • Cell Culture Techniques*
  • Cell Degranulation
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chymases / metabolism
  • Endothelium, Vascular / cytology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Lipectomy
  • Mast Cells / physiology*
  • Spheroids, Cellular / cytology
  • Stem Cell Factor / metabolism
  • Stromal Cells / physiology*


  • Stem Cell Factor
  • Chymases