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Cryopreservation of Human Adipose Tissues and Adipose-Derived Stem Cells with DMSO and/or Trehalose: A Systematic Review

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Crowley, Conor A. 
Smith, William P. W.  ORCID logo
Seah, K. T. Matthew  ORCID logo
Lim, Soo-Keat 


Adipose tissue senescence is implicated as a major player in obesity- and ageing-related disorders. There is a growing body of research studying relevant mechanisms in age-related diseases, as well as the use of adipose-derived stem cells in regenerative medicine. The cell banking of tissue by utilising cryopreservation would allow for much greater flexibility of use. Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) is the most commonly used cryopreservative agent but is toxic to cells. Trehalose is a sugar synthesised by lower organisms to withstand extreme cold and drought that has been trialled as a cryopreservative agent. To examine the efficacy of trehalose in the cryopreservation of human adipose tissue, we conducted a systematic review of studies that used trehalose for the cryopreservation of human adipose tissues and adipose-derived stem cells. Thirteen articles, including fourteen studies, were included in the final review. All seven studies that examined DMSO and trehalose showed that they could be combined effectively to cryopreserve adipocytes. Although studies that compared nonpermeable trehalose with DMSO found trehalose to be inferior, studies that devised methods to deliver nonpermeable trehalose into the cell found it comparable to DMSO. Trehalose is only comparable to DMSO when methods are devised to introduce it into the cell. There is some evidence to support using trehalose instead of using no cryopreservative agent.



adipose-derived stem cells, cryopreservation, trehalose, lipoaspirate, autologous fat grafting, ageing

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