Neural Stem Cell Culture

Neural stem cells (NSCs) are self-renewing, multipotent cells that generate the basic cell types of the nervous system. NSCs primarily differentiate into neurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes, depending on environmental cues. The use of neural stem cells in research and medicine is becoming increasingly widespread. The discovery that neurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes arise from neural stem cells located in specific regions of the brain, such as SVZ and hippocampus, reveals the potential of using NSCs to treat central nervous system diseases, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. More recently, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have been proposed as an alternative efficient method of generating neural stem cells.

MilliporeSigma offers a broad range of tools and technologies to culture neural stem cells including proprietary human and rodent NSC lines from various sources, optimized serum-free expansion and differentiation media, media supplements and a broad range or NSC related antibodies.


 Neural Stem Cell Lines

Human Neural Stem Cell Lines

MilliporeSigma offers a variety of proprietary human neural stem cell lines derived from various sources including iPSC, fetal and embryonic stem cells. All NSC lines come with optimized serum-free expansion media and reagents to ensure proper expansion.


RenCell™ Neural Progenitors

ENStem-A™ Neural Progenitors

XCell Sciences Neural Cells

OPC Cells

Neural Stem Cells

Neural Stem Cells

Neurons, Astrocytes, Dopaminergic Progenitors

Oligodendrocyte Progenitors

Fetal Tissue Derived

Human ES Cell Derived

Human iPSC Derived

Human ES Cell Derived





ReNcell® VM: derived from the ventral mesencephalon brain region

ReNcell® CX: derived from the cortical brain region.

H9 human embryonic stem cells derived NSCs that proliferate as an adherent monolayer.

Gene-edited isogenic knockout neural cells that mimic loss of function of genes associated with various CNS disorders.

Easily generate enriched populations of mature human oligodendrocytes in just 2-3 weeks.

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Product Highlight: RenCell™ Human Neural Stem Cells

 Neural Stem Cell Media and Supplements

Neural Stem Cell Expansion Media

NeuralQ Basal Media and GS21 Supplement

Serum-free neural stem cell medium optimized for maximum growth and survival of primary and iPSC-derived neural cells in culture. NeuralQ Basal Medium shows superior performance in supporting overall cell health and viability of neurons during short and long-term cell culture compared to a leading competitor′s product offering.

NS21: re-defined and modified supplement B27 for neuronal cultures. J Neurosci Methods. 2008 Jun 30;171(2):239-47.

Higher neuron viability after 2 and 4 weeks in culture

Primary Rat Cortical Neurons cultured in GS21™ supplemented NeuralQ Basal Media showed significantly higher neuron viability after 2 weeks and 4 weeks in culture, as compared to cells cultured in leading competitor media. Neurons plated in 96-well plates were labeled with MAP2 (green), and Dapi (blue) to denote nuclei.


Browse all Neural Media Supplements

Stemline® Neural Stem Cell Expansion Medium

  • Consistent robust expansion of human neural stem cells in both neurosphere and monolayer cultures.
  • Serum-free and animal origin-free formulation
  • Produced in a GMP state-of-the-art facility with an available Device Master File (DMF).



Neural Stem Cell Differentiation Media

Human ES/iPS Neural Induction Media

The discovery that somatic cells could be converted into induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells with the expression of four transcription factors has created an exciting new area of stem cell biology research. MilliporeSigma offers ready-to-use differentiation media that incorporate supplements, small molecule inhibitors, and growth factors to easily produce neural progenitors and specific neural and glial subtypes from human iPS cells.

Application Note: Robust Differentiation of Human iPSCs into Lineage-Specific Neuronal and Glial Cells Utilizing Dual-SMAD Inhibition


Workflow showing all steps in iPS cell generation and subsequent differentiation to neural lineages. In as few as four steps, adult fibroblasts can be converted to neural lineages using media formulations for modulating cell fate. Along with iPS cell-generating reprogramming technologies (STEMCCA™ and Simplicon™ kits), EMD Millipore now offers media to generate different neural and glial subtypes from iPS cells for “disease-in-a-dish” researchers.


Part Number

Item Description


Human ES/iPS Neural Induction Medium


Human ES/iPS Neuronal Differentiation Medium


ENStem-A™ Neural Expansion Medium


Human ES/iPS Neurogenesis Kit


Human Dopaminergic Neurogenesis Kit

Neural Stem Cell Growth Factors

Neural Stem Cell Small Molecules

Neural Stem Cell Protocols


 Neural Stem Cell Characterization

Neural Stem Cell Antibodies

Popular Neural Stem Cell and Lineage Specific Antibodies

Progenitor Markers:










Neuronal Markers:





Tyrosine Hydroxylase




Glial Markers:










Browse all of our Neuroscience Antibodies Here

Human Neural Stem Cell Characterization Kit

The Human Neural Stem Cell Characterization Kit contains three molecular markers, Nestin, Sox 2 & Musashi that are frequently used to identify neural stem/progenitor cells.


AXIS: Axon Investigation System

The AXIS microfluidic device can be used to study neurite outgrowth in living cells. Each device is composed of two wells and an interconnected channel, separated by a set of microgrooves. The hydrostatic pressure formed by volume differential between chambers induces fluidic isolation of the solution on the low volume side of the device. The microfluidic design of an AXIS device allows for development and maintenance of a fluidic gradient of chemoattractants, toxins or other molecules of interest, facilitating controlled exposure and differentiation of axons.