Human pluripotent cells such as human embryonic stem cells (hESC) are a great potential source of cells for cell-based therapies; however, directing their differentiation into the desired cell types with high purity remains a challenge. The stem cell microenvironment plays a vital role in directing hESC fate and we have previously shown that manipulation of colony size in a serum- and cytokine-free environment controls self-renewal and differentiation toward the extraembryonic endoderm lineage. Here we show that, in the presence of bone morphogenetic protein 2 and activin A, control of colony size using a microcontact printing technology is able to direct hESC fate to either the mesoderm or the endoderm lineage. Large, 1200-μm-diameter colonies give rise to mesoderm, while small 200-μm colonies give rise to definitive endoderm. This study links, for the first time, cellular organization to pluripotent cell differentiation along the mesoderm and endoderm lineages. © 2008.
Lee, L. H., Peerani, R., Ungrin, M., Joshi, C., Kumacheva, E., & Zandstra, P. (2009). Micropatterning of human embryonic stem cells dissects the mesoderm and endoderm lineages. Stem Cell Research, 2(2), 155–162. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scr.2008.11.004