Table of Contents
ISRN Stem Cells
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 625164, 10 pages
Research Article

Embryonic Decellularized Cardiac Scaffold Supports Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation to Produce Beating Cardiac Tissue

1Division of Cardiovascular Diseases, Department of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905, USA
2Center for Regenerative Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905, USA
3Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905, USA
4Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905, USA
5Transplant Center, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905, USA

Received 12 November 2013; Accepted 4 December 2013; Published 31 March 2014

Academic Editors: R. Dressel and S. M. Hwang

Copyright © 2014 Cree Chamberland et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Regenerative medicine offers a curative approach to treating heart disease through multiple emerging therapeutic concepts. Decellularized organ scaffolds are being optimized to guide and spatially organize stem cell differentiation in efforts to rebuild functional tissues. Additionally, pluripotent stem cells offer a transformative cell source to differentiate into the full spectrum of cellular building blocks. Adult cardiac tissues have been used as extracellular scaffolds as a proof of principle; however, matching the developmental stages of embryonic scaffold with primitive cardiac progenitors may be used to optimize the differentiation and maturation of bioengineered cardiac tissues. Our novel approach uses embryo-derived decellularized hearts as scaffolds to promote embryonic stem cell differentiation. Further, we determined that agitation with 0.25% sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) solution was the most effective protocol to maintain matrix integrity while eliminating endogenous cells. The scaffolds were successfully reseeded with different cellular sources derived from pluripotent stem cells to achieve beating cardiac tissues characterized by endothelial, cardiac, and smooth muscle markers. Therefore, embedding stem cells within a tissue-specific environment matched to the developmental stage of the progenitors may offer a practical solution for stem-cell-derived applications such as disease modeling, pharmaceutical safety testing, and screening of novel therapeutic targets.