Date: 28 Aug 2009

Monitoring Stemness in Long-Term hESC Cultures by Real-Time PCR

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Abstract

Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) involve long-term cultures that must remain undifferentiated. The real-time PCR (RT-PCR) technique allows the relative quantification of target genes, including undifferentiation and differentiation markers when referred to a housekeeping control with the addition of a calibrator that serves as an internal control to compare different lots of reactions during the time. The main aspects will include a minimal number of cells to be analyzed, genes to be tested, and how to choose the appropriate calibrator sample and the reference gene. In this chapter, we present how to apply the RT-PCR technique, protocols for its performance, experimental set-up and software analysis, as of the gene expression of hESC lines in consecutive passages for long-term culture surveillance.