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"We have developed an in vitro cultivation system that allows for propagation of human mammary epithelial cells (HMECs) in an undifferentiated state, based on their ability to proliferate in suspension, as nonadherent mammospheres. We demonstrate that nonadherent mammospheres are enriched in early progenitor/stem cells and able to differentiate along all three mammary epithelial lineages and to clonally generate complex functional structures in reconstituted 3D culture systems. "
PMID: 12756227
Genes Dev. 2003 May 15;17(10):1253-70.
In vitro propagation and transcriptional profiling of human mammary stem/progenitor cells.
Dontu G, Abdallah WM, Foley JM, Jackson KW, Clarke MF, Kawamura MJ, Wicha MS.

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