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Comparison of Enzymatic and Non-Enzymatic Means of Dissociating Adherent Monolayers of Mesenchymal Stem Cells

The dissociation of adherent mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) monolayers with trypsin and enzyme-free dissociation buffer was compared. A significantly lower proportion of viable cells were obtained with enzyme-free dissociation buffers compared to trypsin. Subsequently, the dissociated cells were re-seeded on new cell culture dishes and were subjected to the MTT assay 24 h later. The proportion of viable cells that reattached was significantly lower for cells obtained by dissociation with enzyme-free dissociation buffer compared to trypsin. Frozen–thawed MSC displayed a similar trend, yielding consistently higher cell viability and reattachment rates when dissociated with trypsin compared to enzyme-free dissociation buffer. It was also demonstrated that exposure of trypsin-dissociated MSC to enzyme-free dissociation buffer for 1 h had no significant detrimental effect on cell viability.

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