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The University of Southampton
Centre for Human Development, Stem Cells and RegenerationResearch themes

Embryonic Stem Cells and Nanotopography

Embryonic stem cells grow as ‘embryoid bodies’ in a laboratory environment
Embryoid body

Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) can be grown indefinitely in the laboratory and still exhibit many of the properties of cells found within a developing embryo. ESCs therefore provide an excellent means to understand biological development.

In an embryo, the chemical and physical environments provide cues that direct embryonic cells to proliferate and specialise to become specific cell types (such as blood, bone, liver, brain).

We are collaborating with Nikolaj Gadegaard and Matthew Dalby at the University of Glasgow to create nano-scaled surface textures (topographies) to investigate how such physical environments regulate the behaviour, properties and development of embryonic cells. This may provide new ways to stimulate stem cells to form new tissue without the risks involved in the use of chemical or genetic methods.

Embryonic stem cells grow as ‘embryoid bodies’ in a laboratory environment
Osteogenic differentiation

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