White Paper: Senescence-Associated Gene Expression Improvements for Cells Cultured in Bio-Blocks

What is Senescence?

Senescence is a progressive mix of changes that negatively impact cell cycle processes like growth, division, and differentiation. As cells are cultured the number of senescent cells increases over time – it’s a natural consequence of cell growth and division.  These changes also have a ripple effect within the culture environment, so non-senescent cells are also negatively impacted.

Cell Culture, Senescence, & Challenges

Traditional, 2D flask-based culture approaches result in an increase of senescent cells over time. Although this increase in senescence is expected, it can make it challenging to culture large numbers of healthy cells for use in experiments.  What if a cell culture platform could reduce the number of senescent cells?


Bio-Blocks & Senescence

Bio-Blocks are a bio-mimetic culture system.  This means the Bio-Blocks mimic the microenvironment of living systems, so cells can grow in an environment that is more true to life than \rigid, plastic 2D culture flasks.  The more true-to-life microenvironment has been shown to have beneficial effects on the cells grown in the Bio-Blocks – initial data suggest that reducing senescence is one of those changes. 

Additional Information: Revolutionary Bio-Blocks Reduce Senescence in Stem Cell Cultures

Novel Hydrogel System Eliminates and Improves Retainment of Non-Senescent Mesenchymal Stem Cell Populations


How can Senescence be Measured?

One way to measure the amount of senescence in culture is to look at key genes related to senescence — P16 and P53.  These two genes are involved in the cell cycle function and play critical roles in senescence.  Increased gene expression is associated with increased senescence.  We’ve also previously used β-Galactosidase staining as a fluorescent staining method.


Senescence-Associated Gene Expression Analysis

Cells were cultured in 2D flasks and Bio-Blocks for this experiment, so the two culture conditions could be compared.  Gene expression of both P16 and P53 was increased in 2D flask cultured cells compared to cells cultured in Bio-Blocks. These gene expression data further support the claim that

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Find Your Experiment’s Missing Piece – Try Ronawk’s Bio-Blocks

Don’t let your cell culture platform limit your experiments.  Bio-Blocks’ ability to retain and reduce senescence can help get the most out of your cultured stem cell populations. Reach out and schedule a time to discuss and learn more: Schedule with the Ronawk Team

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