The availability of fibroblasts that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) would be of interest for the monitoring of cell growth, migration, contraction, and other processes within the fibroblast-populated collagen matrix and other culture systems. A plasmid lentiviral vector-GFP (pLV-GFP) was utilized for gene delivery to produce primary human foreskin fibroblasts (HFFs) that stably express GFP. Cell morphology, cell migration, and collagen contraction were compared between nontransduced HFFs and transduced GFP-HFFs; no differences were observed. Immunocytochemical staining showed no differences in cell morphology between nontransduced and GFP-HFFs in both two-dimensional and three-dimensional culture systems. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in cellular population growth within the collagen matrix populated with nontransduced vs. GFP-HFFs. Within the limits of our assays, we conclude that transduction of GFP into HFFs did not alter the observed properties of HFFs compared with nontransduced fibroblasts. The GFP-HFFs may represent a new tool for the convenient monitoring of living primary fibroblast processes in two-dimensional or three-dimensional culture.
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