Chondrogenic differentiation of amniotic fluid-derived stem cells

Yash M. Kolambkar, Alexandra Peister, Shay Soker, Anthony Atala, Robert E. Guldberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

145 Scopus citations


For regenerating damaged articular cartilage, it is necessary to identify an appropriate cell source that is easily accessible, can be expanded to large numbers, and has chondrogenic potential. Amniotic fluid-derived stem (AFS) cells have recently been isolated from human and rodent amniotic fluid and shown to be highly proliferative and broadly pluripotent. The purpose of this study was to investigate the chondrogenic potential of human AFS cells in pellet and alginate hydrogel cultures. Human AFS cells were expanded in various media conditions, and cultured for three weeks with growth factor supplementation. There was increased production of sulfated glycosaminoglycan (sGAG) and type II collagen in response to transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) supplementation, with TGF-β1 producing greater increases than TGF-β3. Modification of expansion media supplements and addition of insulin-like growth factor-1 during pellet culture further increased sGAG/DNA over TGF-β1 supplementation alone. Compared to bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells, the AFS cells produced less cartilaginous matrix after three weeks of TGF-β1 supplementation in pellet culture. Even so, this study demonstrates that AFS cells have the potential to differentiate along the chondrogenic lineage, thus establishing the feasibility of using these cells for cartilage repair applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)405-413
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Molecular Histology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Amniotic fluid stem cells
  • Cartilage repair
  • Chondrogenic differentiation
  • Mesenchymal stem cells
  • Pellet culture
  • Transforming growth factor-beta

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Anatomy


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