Explant Culture for Studying Lung Development
Lung development is a complex process that requires the input of various signaling pathways to coordinate the specification and differentiation of multiple cell types. Ex vivo culture of the lung is a very useful technique that represents an attractive model for investigating many different processes critical to lung development, function, and disease pathology. Ex vivo cultured lungs remain comparable to the in vivo lung both in structure and function, which makes them more suitable than cell cultures for physiological studies. Lung explant cultures offer several significant advantages for studies of morphogenetic events that guide lung development including budding, branching, and fusion. It also maintains the native physiological interactions between cells in the developing lung, enabling investigations of the direct and indirect signaling taking place between tissues and cells throughout the developmental process. Studying temporal and spatial control of gene expression by transcriptional factors using different reporters to understand their regulatory function at different moments of development is another valuable advantage of lung explants culture.
Key wordsLung branching morphogenesis Organ culture Air–liquid interface Lung slice Ex vivo culture
- 5.Nicholas B, Staples KJ, Moese S, Meldrum E, Ward J, Dennison P, Havelock T, Hinks TS, Amer K, Woo E, Chamberlain M, Singh N, North M, Pink S, Wilkinson TM, Djukanovic R (2015) A novel lung explant model for the ex vivo study of efficacy and mechanisms of anti-influenza drugs. J Immunol 194(12):6144–6154CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 6.Del Moral PM, Warburton D (2010) Explant culture of mouse embryonic whole lung, isolated epithelium, or mesenchyme under chemically defined conditions as a system to evaluate the molecular mechanism of branching morphogenesis and cellular differentiation. Methods Mol Biol 633:71–79CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 11.Shojaie S, Ermini L, Ackerley C, Wang J, Chin S, Yeganeh B, Bilodeau M, Sambi M, Rogers I, Rossant J, Bear CE, Post M (2015) Acellular lung scaffolds direct differentiation of endoderm to functional airway epithelial cells: requirement of matrix-bound HS proteoglycans. Stem Cell Reports 4(3):419–430CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar