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Insights from a chimpanzee adipose stromal cell population: opportunities for adult stem cells to expand primate functional genomics.

Pfefferle LW, Wray GA - Genome Biol Evol (2013)

Bottom Line: Although hesitant to draw definitive conclusions from these data given the limited sample size, we wish to stress the opportunities that adult stem cells offer for studying primate evolution.In particular, adult stem cells provide a powerful means to investigate the profound disease susceptibilities unique to humans and a promising tool for conservation efforts with nonhuman primates.By allowing for experimental perturbations in relevant cell types, adult stem cells promise to complement classic comparative primate genomics based on in vivo sampling.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Biology, Duke University.

ABSTRACT
Comparisons between humans and chimpanzees are essential for understanding traits unique to each species. However, linking important phenotypic differences to underlying molecular changes is often challenging. The ability to generate, differentiate, and profile adult stem cells provides a powerful but underutilized opportunity to investigate the molecular basis for trait differences between species within specific cell types and in a controlled environment. Here, we characterize adipose stromal cells (ASCs) from Clint, the chimpanzee whose genome was first sequenced. Using imaging and RNA-Seq, we compare the chimpanzee ASCs with three comparable human cell lines. Consistent with previous studies on ASCs in humans, the chimpanzee cells have fibroblast-like morphology and express genes encoding components of the extracellular matrix at high levels. Differentially expressed genes are enriched for distinct functional classes between species: immunity and protein processing are higher in chimpanzees, whereas cell cycle and DNA processing are higher in humans. Although hesitant to draw definitive conclusions from these data given the limited sample size, we wish to stress the opportunities that adult stem cells offer for studying primate evolution. In particular, adult stem cells provide a powerful means to investigate the profound disease susceptibilities unique to humans and a promising tool for conservation efforts with nonhuman primates. By allowing for experimental perturbations in relevant cell types, adult stem cells promise to complement classic comparative primate genomics based on in vivo sampling.

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Chimpanzee ASCs in culture. (A) Fluorescence image depicting the nucleus (blue: DAPI) and the actin filaments (red: phalloidin). (B) Brightfield image of ASCs at confluence before collection. (C) Brightfield image depicting the nucleus (blue: Mayer’s hematoxylin) and lipid droplets (red: Oil Red O).
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evt148-F1: Chimpanzee ASCs in culture. (A) Fluorescence image depicting the nucleus (blue: DAPI) and the actin filaments (red: phalloidin). (B) Brightfield image of ASCs at confluence before collection. (C) Brightfield image depicting the nucleus (blue: Mayer’s hematoxylin) and lipid droplets (red: Oil Red O).

Mentions: We visualized cultured chimpanzee ASCs using several staining protocols (fig. 1). Most chimpanzee ASCs adopt a fibroblast-like phenotype in vitro (fig. 1), consistent with previous reports of human ASCs (Zuk et al. 2001) and with the human ASCs profiled in this study (fig. 2). In comparison with human ASCs, Clint’s ASCs are not uniform, displaying a range of sizes and shapes (fig. 2). When grown to confluence, the chimpanzee ASCs migrate on top of one another and appear to exhibit lower levels of contact inhibition than the human ASCs (fig. 2). Decreased contact inhibition has been noted in other stem cell populations, such as embryonic stem cells (Burdon et al. 2002). Interestingly, small lipid droplets are present in some of the chimpanzee ASCs but were not seen in any of the human stromal cells profiled in this study (fig. 2, arrows).Fig. 1.—


Insights from a chimpanzee adipose stromal cell population: opportunities for adult stem cells to expand primate functional genomics.

Pfefferle LW, Wray GA - Genome Biol Evol (2013)

Chimpanzee ASCs in culture. (A) Fluorescence image depicting the nucleus (blue: DAPI) and the actin filaments (red: phalloidin). (B) Brightfield image of ASCs at confluence before collection. (C) Brightfield image depicting the nucleus (blue: Mayer’s hematoxylin) and lipid droplets (red: Oil Red O).
© Copyright Policy - creative-commons
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3814206&req=5

evt148-F1: Chimpanzee ASCs in culture. (A) Fluorescence image depicting the nucleus (blue: DAPI) and the actin filaments (red: phalloidin). (B) Brightfield image of ASCs at confluence before collection. (C) Brightfield image depicting the nucleus (blue: Mayer’s hematoxylin) and lipid droplets (red: Oil Red O).
Mentions: We visualized cultured chimpanzee ASCs using several staining protocols (fig. 1). Most chimpanzee ASCs adopt a fibroblast-like phenotype in vitro (fig. 1), consistent with previous reports of human ASCs (Zuk et al. 2001) and with the human ASCs profiled in this study (fig. 2). In comparison with human ASCs, Clint’s ASCs are not uniform, displaying a range of sizes and shapes (fig. 2). When grown to confluence, the chimpanzee ASCs migrate on top of one another and appear to exhibit lower levels of contact inhibition than the human ASCs (fig. 2). Decreased contact inhibition has been noted in other stem cell populations, such as embryonic stem cells (Burdon et al. 2002). Interestingly, small lipid droplets are present in some of the chimpanzee ASCs but were not seen in any of the human stromal cells profiled in this study (fig. 2, arrows).Fig. 1.—

Bottom Line: Although hesitant to draw definitive conclusions from these data given the limited sample size, we wish to stress the opportunities that adult stem cells offer for studying primate evolution.In particular, adult stem cells provide a powerful means to investigate the profound disease susceptibilities unique to humans and a promising tool for conservation efforts with nonhuman primates.By allowing for experimental perturbations in relevant cell types, adult stem cells promise to complement classic comparative primate genomics based on in vivo sampling.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Biology, Duke University.

ABSTRACT
Comparisons between humans and chimpanzees are essential for understanding traits unique to each species. However, linking important phenotypic differences to underlying molecular changes is often challenging. The ability to generate, differentiate, and profile adult stem cells provides a powerful but underutilized opportunity to investigate the molecular basis for trait differences between species within specific cell types and in a controlled environment. Here, we characterize adipose stromal cells (ASCs) from Clint, the chimpanzee whose genome was first sequenced. Using imaging and RNA-Seq, we compare the chimpanzee ASCs with three comparable human cell lines. Consistent with previous studies on ASCs in humans, the chimpanzee cells have fibroblast-like morphology and express genes encoding components of the extracellular matrix at high levels. Differentially expressed genes are enriched for distinct functional classes between species: immunity and protein processing are higher in chimpanzees, whereas cell cycle and DNA processing are higher in humans. Although hesitant to draw definitive conclusions from these data given the limited sample size, we wish to stress the opportunities that adult stem cells offer for studying primate evolution. In particular, adult stem cells provide a powerful means to investigate the profound disease susceptibilities unique to humans and a promising tool for conservation efforts with nonhuman primates. By allowing for experimental perturbations in relevant cell types, adult stem cells promise to complement classic comparative primate genomics based on in vivo sampling.

Show MeSH