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Rabbit articular chondrocytes in alginate gel: characterisation of immobilized preparations and potential applications


Primary cultivated rabbit articular chondrocytes were immobilized in calcium alginate beads. Both free and entrapped cells were allowed to grow under normal conditions. After long-term immobilization, the cells still exhibited metabolic activities, patterns of division, synthesis and secretion of extracellular matrix macromolecules such as type II collagen and proteoglycans. After 38 days, immobilized rabbit articular chondrocytes predominantly expressed type II but not type I collagen. Thus, they maintained their cartilage phenotype. After bead lysis, harvested cells showed normal growth patterns when resuspended in culture medium. On the basis of these results, long-duration storage and large-scale production of extracellular matrix components are being investigated.

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Some of the results were presented at the international congress “Physiology of immobilized cells”, December 10–13, 1989, Wageningen, The Netherlands

Correspondence to: M. Lièvremont

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Tamponnet, C., Ramdi, H., Guyot, J. et al. Rabbit articular chondrocytes in alginate gel: characterisation of immobilized preparations and potential applications. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 37, 311–315 (1992).

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  • Immobilization
  • Extracellular Matrix
  • Macromolecule
  • Alginate
  • Alginate Bead