author：Cai, A., et al.
BackgroundThe creation of functional skeletal muscle via tissue engineering holds great promise without sacrificing healthy donor tissue. Different cell types have been investigated regarding their myogenic differentiation potential under the influence of various media supplemented with growth factors. Yet, most cell cultures include the use of animal sera, which raises safety concerns and might lead to variances in results. Electrospun nanoscaffolds represent suitable matrices for tissue engineering of skeletal muscle, combining both biocompatibility and stability.We therefore aimed to develop a serum-free myogenic differentiation medium for the co-culture of primary myoblasts (Mb) and mesenchymal stromal cells derived from the bone marrow (BMSC) and adipose tissue (ADSC) on electrospun poly-epsilon-caprolacton (PCL)-collagen I-nanofibers.ResultsRat Mb were co-cultured with rat BMSC (BMSC/Mb) or ADSC (ADSC/Mb) two-dimensionally (2D) as monolayers or three-dimensionally (3D) on aligned PCL-collagen I-nanofibers. Differentiation media contained either AIM V, AIM V and Ultroser (R) G, DMEM/Ham's F12 and Ultroser (R) G, or donor horse serum (DHS) as a conventional differentiation medium. In 2D co-culture groups, highest upregulation of myogenic markers could be induced by serum-free medium containing DMEM/Ham's F12 and Ultroser (R) G (group 3) after 7 days. Alpha actinin skeletal muscle 2 (ACTN2) was upregulated 3.3-fold for ADSC/Mb and 1.7-fold for BMSC/Mb after myogenic induction by group 3 serum-free medium when compared to stimulation with DHS. Myogenin (MYOG) was upregulated 5.2-fold in ADSC/Mb and 2.1-fold in BMSC/Mb. On PCL-collagen I-nanoscaffolds, ADSC showed a higher cell viability compared to BMSC in co-culture with Mb. Myosin heavy chain 2, ACTN2, and MYOG as late myogenic markers, showed higher gene expression after long term stimulation with DHS compared to serum-free stimulation, especially in BMSC/Mb co-cultures. Immunocytochemical staining with myosin heavy chain verified the presence of a contractile apparatus under both serum free and standard differentiation conditions.ConclusionsIn this study, we were able to myogenically differentiate mesenchymal stromal cells with myoblasts on PCL-collagen I-nanoscaffolds in a serum-free medium. Our results show that this setting can be used for skeletal muscle tissue engineering, applicable to future clinical applications since no xenogenous substances were used.