Transplantation of human embryonic stem cells and derivatives to the chick embryo.

Ronald S. Goldstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Traditional methods of studying the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) include generation of embryoid bodies, induced differentiation in vitro, and transplantation to immune-deficient mice. The chick embryo is a well-studied and accessible experimental system that has been used for many years as a xenograft host for mammalian cells. Several years ago, we performed experiments transplanting colonies of hESC into organogenesis-stage chick embryos to establish a novel system for studying the developmental programs and decisions of pluripotent human cells. Fluorescent hESC were used, in order to permit identification of the hESC in living embryos. We transplanted hESC into the trunk of chick embryos, both into and instead of developing somites. Our results showed that hESC survive, migrate, and integrate into the tissues of the chick embryo. Some of the hESC differentiated and the type of embryonic microenvironment that the implanted cells were exposed to modified their differentiation. Several other laboratories have subsequently xenografted hESC-derived cells to chick embryos for evaluating their differentiation in vivo. Therefore, the hESC-chick embryo system is a useful xenograft system complementing studies in rodents and in vitro, as well as uniquely shedding light on early processes in the development of human cells in the embryonic context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-385
Number of pages19
JournalMethods in Molecular Biology
StatePublished - 2010


Dive into the research topics of 'Transplantation of human embryonic stem cells and derivatives to the chick embryo.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this