PloS one

Establishment of trophoblast stem cells under defined culture conditions in mice.

PMID 25203285


The inner cell mass (ICM) and trophoblast cell lineages duet early embryonic development in mammals. After implantation, the ICM forms the embryo proper as well as some extraembryonic tissues, whereas the trophoectoderm (TE) exclusively forms the fetal portion of the placenta and the trophoblast giant cells. Although embryonic stem (ES) cells can be derived from ICM in cultures of mouse blastocysts in the presence of LIF and/or combinations of small-molecule chemical compounds, and the undifferentiated pluripotent state can be stably maintained without use of serum and feeder cells, defined culture conditions for derivation and maintenance of undifferentiated trophoblast stem (TS) cells have not been established. Here, we report that addition of FGF2, activin A, XAV939, and Y27632 are necessary and sufficient for derivation of TS cells from both of E3.5 blastocysts and E6.5 early postimplantation extraembryonic ectoderm. Moreover, the undifferentiated TS cell state can be stably maintained in chemically defined culture conditions. Cells derived in this manner expressed TS cell marker genes, including Eomes, Elf5, Cdx2, Klf5, Cdh1, Esrrb, Sox2, and Tcfap2c; differentiated into all trophoblast subtypes (trophoblast giant cells, spongiotrophoblast, and labyrinthine trophoblast) in vitro; and exclusively contributed to trophoblast lineages in chimeric animals. This delineation of minimal requirements for derivation and self-renewal provides a defined platform for precise description and dissection of the molecular state of TS cells.