Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 27, Issue 1, pp 263–268

Isolation of specific bone cell types by free-flow electrophoresis

  • J. Edward Puzas
  • Agnes Vignery
  • Howard Rasmussen
Laboratory Investigations


The bone cells and fibroblasts from fetal rat calvaria can be isolated by collagenase digestion of the collagen matrix and separated into specific cell types by free-flow electrophoresis. The method involves injection of a specially prepared suspension of cells into a stream of buffer across which is maintained an electric field of 60 V/cm. The fetal bone cell types are differentially deflected toward the anode where they can be collected. Free-flow electrophoresis of this heterogenous cell preparation yields three distinguishable peaks which can be identified by morphologic, morphometric, and enzymatic characteristics. All three cell peaks have greater than 95% viability as judged by trypan blue exclusion and will grow to confluent monolayers in culture. The data indicate that these cell peaks may be comprised of osteoclasts and/or preosteoclasts, osteoblasts and/or preosteoblasts, and fibroblasts.

Key words

Bone cells Separation Free-flow electrophoresis 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Edward Puzas
    • 1
  • Agnes Vignery
    • 1
  • Howard Rasmussen
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Internal Medicine and PathologyYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.V.A. Medical Center, Research Service (11A), American LakeTacomaUSA

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