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In vitro engineering of human stratified urothelium: analysis of its morphology and function.
Journal of Urology
Date de publication
Publication types: Journal Article
PURPOSE: Gastric or intestinal patches, commonly used for reconstructive cystoplasty, may induce severe metabolic complications. The use of bladder tissues reconstructed in vitro could avoid these complications. We compared cellular differentiation and permeability characteristics of human native with in vitro cultured stratified urothelium. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Human stratified urothelium was induced in vitro. Morphology was studied with light and electron microscopy and expression of key cellular proteins was assessed using immunohistochemistry. Permeability coefficients were determined by measuring water, urea, ammonia and proton fluxes across the urothelium. RESULTS: As in native urothelium the stratified urothelial construct consisted of basal membrane and basal, intermediate and superficial cell layers. The apical membrane of superficial cells formed villi and glycocalices, and tight junctions and desmosomes were developed. Immunohistochemistry showed similarities and differences in the expression of cytokeratins, integrin and cellular adhesion proteins. In the cultured urothelium cytokeratin 20 and integrin subunits alpha6 and beta4 were absent, and symplekin was expressed diffusely in all layers. Uroplakins were clearly expressed in the superficial umbrella cells of the urothelial constructs, however, they were also present in intermediate and basal cells. Symplekin and uroplakins were expressed only in the superficial cells of native bladder tissue. The urothelial constructs showed excellent viability, and functionally their permeabilities for water, urea and ammonia were no different from those measured in native human urothelium. Proton permeability was even lower in the constructs compared to that of native urothelium. CONCLUSIONS: Although the in vitro cultured human stratified urothelium did not show complete terminal differentiation of its superficial cells, it retained the same barrier characteristics against the principal urine components. These results indicate that such in vitro cultured urothelium, after being grown on a compliant degradable support or in coculture with smooth muscle cells, is suitable for reconstructive cystoplasty.
Cell Differentiation, Cell Membrane Permeability, Cells, Cultured, Humans, Immunohistochemistry, Integrins, Intermediate Filament Proteins, Keratin-20, Nuclear Proteins, Proteins, Urothelium
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